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ElGobernador

Texas Highway Construction

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As everyone knows, Texas is building a ton of new tollways, and is widening a bunch of its freeways. I hope that the end is near for all of these wideings and such, if for nothing else the feasibility is decreasing. However, they have taken time to include some 'artwork' in the freeway work. Here are some of the designs of current and future freeways here.

Katy Frwy, Houston

I-10%20Artist%20Rendering.jpg

Katy Frwy.

I-10%20at%20Park%20Ten%202%20_%204%202004_small.jpg

BTW, they are using a similar design for the concrete piers on a frwy conversion project of US 290 north of town--except they are designed like trees, complete with sculpted bark! Even the walls alongside the freeway has tree stumps sculted into it, like a forest. What's sad is that those might be the only trees that close to 290 in about 20 years.

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Here's more:

El Paso I-10/Americas Frwy Interchange

int_after.jpg

San Antonio's Kelly Parkway

Southcross.jpg

Military.jpg

San Antonio's I-10/I-410 interchagne

410_21.jpg

410_20.jpg

San Antonio's I-410/US 281 interchange

mccullough_us281_14.jpg

San Antonio's I-410/I-35 interchange

ih35_culebra_4_sm.jpg

Tyler's SH 49

Lp_49-s-0581.jpg

Lp_49-s-0649.jpg

Dallas' Stemmons Frwy (I-35)

stemmons_view.jpg

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More still:

Dallas' High Five

high_five_2A_2004-05-23_looking_south_750.jpg

high_five_15A_looking_n_future_nb_us75_2004-04-25_750.jpg

high_five_08A_looking_e_eb_frontage_2004-04-25%20copy.jpg

Two new tollways in Austin; SH 45 and Lp 1

sh45_at%20_172_2003-12-09_C_785.jpg

sh45_at_172_2003-12-08_C_785.jpg

Only in Texas would there be no problem with taking up SO MUCH LAND!!

loop1_sh45_const_2003-12-08_B_785.jpg

SH 45/US 183 Austin

183at45-E-LookingNortheast5.jpg

183at45-W-LookingEast2.jpg

Lastly, Houston's Westpark Tollway, complete with purple signs.

Westpark_ApproachingEndAtIH610_EB_LE_12Apr04_lres.jpg

As you can see, a BUNCH of conrete being poured here. The optimist says that rails will increase. Even Union Pacific, which owns a lot of lines here, has been part of discussions for commuter rail in Harris County (Houston). In fact, Union Pacific suggested extending the commuter rail onward to College Station, which is a 90 mile drive from DT Houston. It's always good when private companies are so helpful.

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WOW! I was wondering what the "high five" was going to look like. I didn't realize it was that far along already. I think the artwork looks cool as long as it doesn't get too guady. I think the idea of just painting the bridges and flyovers is cool. One of things Texas freeways don't have to put up with is severe weather extremes like here in Michigan. Bridges and freeway surfaces are so beaten up here. If they would paint the concrete, it may hold up better despite the necessity of repainting every so often. I recently passed beneath an overpass that had a section of a support column chipped and broken away with all the rebar exposed. If only our older freeways could be redone to look like the ones you just posted.

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I recently passed beneath an overpass that had a section of a support column chipped and broken away with all the rebar exposed. If only our older freeways could be redone to look like the ones you just posted.

Haha, I've been meaning to take some pictures of Route 195 here in Providence, I'll show you some exposed rebar, how about an interstate highway bridge supported largely by 2x4's (as in the wood).

Westpark_ApproachingEndAtIH610_EB_LE_12Apr04_lres.jpg

Why are the signs here blue? Interstate standard calls for green, blue being used for rest areas and other informational signage. These being directional should be green. Is this somesort of toll road or privately funded road?

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WOW!  I was wondering what the "high five" was going to look like.  I didn't realize it was that far along already.  I think the artwork looks cool as long as it doesn't get too guady.  I think the idea of just painting the bridges and flyovers is cool.  One of things Texas freeways don't have to put up with is severe weather extremes like here in Michigan.  Bridges and freeway surfaces are so beaten up here.  If they would paint the concrete, it may hold up better despite the necessity of repainting every so often.  I recently passed beneath an overpass that had a section of a support column chipped and broken away with all the rebar exposed.  If only our older freeways could be redone to look like the ones you just posted.

Yeah, I've never seen anything like the High-Five (still haven't seen it in person) but I'm sure that it is something that is "something to behold" for freeway lovers and haters alike. Just as a marvel of human engineering and ability. On the High Five's website, they show an animation of the contraption used to put those long flyovers together. It's pretty cool.

Anyway, the High-Five is changing from this:

07-23-01l.jpg

into this:

title.jpg

lbj_north.gif

lbj_south.gif

lbj_east.gif

www.dallashighfive.org

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Guest donaltopablo

That's an impressive amount of freeways!

Despite all the negatives of large freeways and what they do to communities and urban areas, they are still interesting to me. I like the high five too. We have one here in Atlanta that is similar at the junction of 85 and 285 and you really don't realize how unique HUGE freeway interchanges are until you've seen some on the scale of Dallas and Atlanta's and realize a lot of other, even very large cities, don't have them.

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Although interstates (non-private) must always keep their directional signs green, SOME state highways do not have to. My city got state approval awhile ago and has since changed all the green directional signs to a sort of gold color, and modified the state highway sign. The new signs look great. I bet it would be confusing though if all cities did it.

Keep the pics coming ElGobernator, they are awesome!

EDIT: I'll try to post some pics of the new signs.

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Thanks Wolverine, almost all of these pics are on texasfreeway.com.

Here are some of Austin ('designer' concrete piers)

I35at290e2001a_lres.jpg

I35at290e2001b_lres.jpg

This is Corpus Christi's SH358/SH286 Interchange. You can't see them as well in this pic, but the tops of the piers (on the sides) are seashells and some of the columns have marlins engraved in them.

sh286_transitioningto358.JPG

This is an artist's rendition of the completed West Loop (I-610) after its reconstruction:

UHbridge.jpg

Here is a retaining wall just completed under the Earl Rudder Freeway here in College Station:

HarveyUturnsCropped.jpg

This is Dallas' Central Expressway (US 75):

central_in_trench.jpg

central_ramp.jpg

central_1.jpg

central_2.jpg

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If anyone's wondering about the colors on the High Five, they are supposed to represent the colors of the numerous creeks that run through Dallas. The dark green supports were originally a more aqua color that was changed because of complaints of drivers. There are creek murals etched into the retaining walls that will use the aqua color for the water though. TxDOT began using paint because they said a sealing agent is painted onto the concrete anyway to protect against the prolonged heat, so they found out that paint works just well. The High Five has been opening ramps up incrementally since last winter. Right now the Two tallest ramps(west to north/south and east to north/south) open. They are both 120 ft tall. Here are some of my old pics

Here you can see the original color replaced by green now

DSC02810.JPG

Here are some Project Pegasus that will start near the end of the decade.

canyon_view.jpg

mixmaster_view.jpg

Beginning stages of the $1.2 billion LBJ reconstruction, which will feature 4 HOV lanes, 12 main lanes, 6 tunnel(yes there will be an underground segment) lanes, 6 frontage lanes, and 3 new 5 level interchanges(High Five is the first. The interchange costs do not count in the $1.2 billion, so this may be a $2 billion+ project)

mesq11.jpg

LBJ Tunnel cross-section

tunnel.gif

plenty more to post on LBJ in the future

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Thanks for the LBJ and High Five pics. I remember seeing an artist's rendition of LBJ once completed. Obviously, the Dallas, Austin, and El Paso districts of TxDOT are the ones really into these designs, but the Houston District seems to be doing it a little more now, too.

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One of things Texas freeways don't have to put up with is severe weather extremes like here in Michigan.

Well, don't think Texas has it that easy - they have to use concrete because it gets so hot during the summer that pavement buckles and bends. Its only suitable for smaller streets from what I understand.

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Well, don't think Texas has it that easy - they have to use concrete because it gets so hot during the summer that pavement buckles and bends. Its only suitable for smaller streets from what I understand.

yeah, and a lot of the concrete that they use is very porous, I guess to allow for room to expand and contract.

Houston also uses a lot of concrete because of the soil type down there. Even many collector-type streets are concrete.

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Elevated highways are fun to drive on in light traffic becasue of the views in flat terrain. Otherwise they are a major eyesore.

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^Now that is one awesome document. Thanks for finding it. I ripped the pics over at dallasmetropolis.com if anyone wants to see. As in the know as many of us are, some of these designs upcoming in Dallas are quite a surprise. As envious as we in Dallas are of Houston's great new, and well maintained freeways, this stuff makes us a little glad that our freeways haven't been rehabbed yet. They certainly need it, but this stuff is wow. As nice as some of the other stuff around the state is, I think they are getting 'jipped' compared to LBJ, I-30 and Pegasus.

I'll post a few of the pics later

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I look forward to the pics, rantanamo. I couldn't figure out how to get them on here from the .pdf. Also, thanks for the info in other threads on other work being done in the state. I'll post some of the pics.

Here is the Marsha Sharp Frwy Project in Lubbock:

FreewayrenderingMS.jpg

arches.jpg

freewaydesign.jpg

This icon will be on the retaining walls on the frwy. It symbolizes the windiness of West Texas:

windyman.jpg

Here's info on the Green Ribbon Project in the Houston. Nowhere near the degree of design elements being proposed for the Dallas district, though.

http://www.katyfreeway.org/Green_Ribbon.pdf

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Wow, very very nice. TxDOT has really stepped it up with design and efficiency. I'm still wondering why no other freeways are getting the 'total' treatment like Central has or LBJ, Project Pegasus, and I-30 will get.

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This is the Woodall Rogers Freeway Bridge for Dallas:

woodall_cropped.jpg

WRBridge03.jpg

WRBridge01.jpg

I-30 Bridge in Dallas:

MODEL7S2.jpg

I-35 Bridge in Dallas:

MODEL8S-lan.jpg

Fred Hartman Bridge, Baytown (Houston), the largest cable-stayed bridge in the US, soon to be passed by the Cooper River Bridge in Charleston.

FredHartmanBridge-001.jpg

bridge-1.jpg

fred_hartman_bridge_houston_channel_night.jpg

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can't believe those bridges in Dallas were to originally go up in 2001. Lots of delays by the feds, NTTA designs, and funding. Now they are funded, and the first two go up next year.

Here's the proposed Woodall Rodgers deck park between the Arts District and Uptown. It's in the private funding collection phase.

woodallrodgersparkdeck.jpg

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Here's some better High Five stuff.

Some early design concepts

asla20040188.jpg

asla20040187.jpg

Finally some color for the retaining walls

asla20040268.jpg

asla20040264.jpg

asla20040263.jpg

asla20040258.jpg

Some of the colors going up. I still like the brighter green color

asla20040255.jpg

asla20040252.jpg

asla20040218.jpg

asla20040217.jpg

asla20040216.jpg

Much better pic of the model

asla20040184.jpg

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This will be the new look of I-30 across the Calatrava bridge from downtown. Will feature another 'total' makeover like Central Expressway. Its currently in the early stages of construction.

asla20040113.jpg

asla20040112.jpg

asla20040111.jpg

asla20040108.jpg

asla20040107.jpg

asla20040106.jpg

New FW Avenue Bridge.

asla20040105.jpg

Old Hampton Rd Bridge to be rehabbed

asla20040094.jpg

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