Midtown Express Project Nears Completion
The massive $850 million, 27.8 mile, Midtown Express project is nearing completion. The project, which includes three roadways (SH 183, SH 114 and Loop 12), is anticipated to be finished by the end of 2018.
The project reconstructed portions of general-purpose lanes and frontage roads and constructed TEXpress Lanes on all three roadways. The heart of the project was improvements to SH 183, which was built in 1959 and has been relatively unchanged since 1973 when an additional main lane was added in each direction. One of the biggest challenges facing the team during construction was keeping traffic flowing through this major corridor. The project had more than 12,000 lane closures and 173 traffic switches with the team working 24 hours a day, seven days per week. Much of the work was phased or performed overnight to minimize effects on peak-time traffic. The project required rehabilitation of 44 bridges, construction of 26 new bridges and completion of four direct connect ramps.
The Texas Department of Transportation opened the TEXpress Lanes on SH 114 in the fall of 2017 and recently opened additional TEXpress Lanes on SH 183 and Loop 12. Drivers can choose to take the main lanes at no cost, or pay a toll to use the TEXpress Lanes. Until early 2019, pricing will follow an approved fixed toll rate schedule. After the fixed-rate period, traffic speeds will be managed through dynamic pricing, so the price will fluctuate based on congestion in the TEXpress Lane. High occupancy vehicles (HOVs) and motorcycle drivers with a valid toll tag who register and activate their HOV status at www.DriveOnTEXpress.com or through a mobile app (Drive On TEXpress), can receive a 50 percent discount during weekday peak periods.