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Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge spanning the busy ship channel is at the end of its design life and does not meet modern bridge standards.

TRIP Lists Texas' 100 Most Deficient Roads

 

January 28, 2013

 

A national research group is warning that Texas needs to spend more on highways to keep pace with population and economic growth.

 

“Increasing roadway and bridge deterioration, traffic safety concerns and growing congestion threaten to stifle economic growth and negatively impact the quality of life of the state’s 26 million residents,” according to TRIP, a nonprofit transportation group supported by insurance, construction and other businesses.

 

Release of the TRIP report on deficient roads and bridges resulted in dozens of media stories throughout the state directing attention to the need for additional sustained highway funding.

 

During the current legislative session, lawmakers are being asked to get serious about providing better long-term funding sources for transportation. Rider Scott, executive director of the Dallas Regional Mobility Coalition, said a growing number of state residents is calling for elected leaders to find the funds to fix the state's crumbling roads.

 

Among the suggestions is that the state stop diverting transportation funds to non-transportation projects, which could generate about $1.2 billion per year. Another idea would be to dedicate sales taxes paid on automobile purchases to the state's Fund 6 highway fund, rather than the general fund, which would raise another $3 billion.

 

"Transportation projects that expand roadway or bridge capacity produce significant economic benefits by reducing congestion and improving access, thus speeding the flow of people and goods while reducing fuel consumption," the group said in its report. "Under current funding scenarios, overall pavement quality is projected to decrease by 43% by 2022. Failing to address pavement deterioration in a timely manner increases repair costs over time."

 

The group predicts that as the population grows the number of vehicle miles traveled in the state will increase 35 percent by 2030. Many of the problems are in major metropolitan areas, particularly Dallas, Houston and San Antonio but significant problems are also occurring in areas of the state that have seen huge increases in truck traffic.

 

TRIP has produced a list of the top 100 Texas transportation challenges including deficient roads and bridges. The list includes 38 highway segments that have significant congestions; 7 that have significant pavement deterioration needing reconstruction; 11 segments  that need urgent safety improvements; and 11 major bridges that have significant deficiencies.

 

THE TOP TEN

Here are the top 10 highways and bridges in on the TRIP list of biggest highway challenges in the state:

 

1. Interstate 30 from downtown Dallas east to loop 12
2. Interstate 45 from Houston’s Loop 610 South to Galveston
3. Interstate 35 through San Antonio
4. Interstate 35W north of the Trinity River in Fort Worth
5. Loop 410 on the north side of San Antonio
6. Secondary roads statewide serving the energy sector where pavement deterioration is severe
7. Dallas North Central Expressway (US 75) from SH 190 to Loop 635

8. Interstate 45 inside Houston's Loop 610
9. US 290 through the Oak Hill Y in southwest Austin
10. Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge which must be replaced