This summer heralds the arrival of major work on part of Loop 1604, which will be widened and improved across the far North Side during most of the decade.
The Texas Department of Transportation posted an online update in May about work crews starting project preparation on the Northwest Side.
Elected leaders acknowledged the work will cause headaches for motorists, but ultimately traffic congestion should be reduced.
“My office is working with TxDOT to ensure neighbors have the most up-to-date information about the project, so they know what’s coming and what to expect,” said District 8 Councilman Manny Peláez. “We are here if you have any questions or comments along the way.”
Residents can call 210-207-0943 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The entire project will produce a range of upgrades on 1604 from Bandera Road to Interstate 35 North that TxDOT says will “increase mobility, reduce congestion and enhance safety along the highly traveled corridor,” according to the state agency’s update.
Specifically, San Antonio’s outer loop will be expanded from four lanes to 10 lanes, including the addition of a high-occupancy vehicle lane in each direction for buses and other multiple-passenger conveyances.
Also, entrance and exit ramps will be reconfigured. The existing 1604/Interstate 10 West interchange will be replaced with a five-level, direct-connect interchange.
TxDOT initially launched overnight lane closures around the eastbound 1604 entrance ramp to La Cantera Parkway, and the eastbound 1604 exit ramp to Vance Jackson Road.
In addition, the project will:
• Replace signalized frontage road intersections with a continuous-flow configuration.
• Remake the 1604/Blanco Road intersection as a “diverging diamond” where two directions of traffic on Blanco cross to the opposite side on both sides of the overpass.
• Provide bicycle lanes and improvements for pedestrians along 1604 frontage roads, as well as Edwards Aquifer water-quality protections.
The widening of 1604 across the heavily populated North Side has been one of TxDOT’s long-planned significant road improvement projects.
Without the improvements, the state expects population growth will nearly double daily traffic counts on 1604, from 150,000 vehicles to 290,000 vehicles by 2045.
Analysts say the average travel time between I-10 and I-35 could exceed one hour by then if the planned freeway upgrades aren’t made.
The first segment of work will involve $148 million in construction between Bandera and I-10. Work could finish by 2024.
Contractors later this summer will begin $234 million worth of betterments on 1604 from I-10 to U.S. 281 North. This segment will be finished in 2025 and connect with newly opened flyover ramps to northbound 281.
Early in 2022, reconstruction of the 1604/I-10 interchange commences with a scheduled completion date in 2025. The interchange revamp is estimated to cost $234 million.
The latter half of the 2020s will see construction crews concentrate on 1604 east from 281 to I-35. This entire stretch of 1604 work is estimated to cost $395 million, and is currently unfunded.
Visit https://tinyurl.com/498z6vj8 for more project background information and to sign up and receive updates.