Council to receive presentation on 35Express

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CORINTH — City council members are scheduled to receive a presentation during their meeting Thursday on the most recent information about the 35Express Project, which is planned to expand Interstate 35E and relieve traffic congestion along the highway.

The presentation is expected to give city officials a better understanding about the project and how construction will affect traffic flow in Corinth and the surrounding cities. According to a Texas Department of Transportation spokeswoman, construction is expected to begin sometime this fall. And officials expect that construction will be completed by early 2017.

Kimberly Sims, the public information manager for the Interstate 35Express Project, will give the council a general project overview and explain the potential traffic impact and construction schedule.

The $4.8 billion project, proposed to be constructed in three phases, will rebuild the entire 28-mile corridor from Farmers Branch to Denton. It will also include what TxDOT officials refer to as managed lanes, which are described as toll lanes.

Approximately $1.4 billion in funding has been identified for Phase 1 of this project, which includes State Highway 121 regional toll revenue funds dedicated to Denton County. Phase 2 of the project will occur when the additional funding becomes available.

For years, council members in Corinth and other local cities have waited patiently for construction to begin. And for months, they have attempted to make the necessary preparations to handle the potential effects construction will have on traffic.

One of those changes included beefing up the police force.

Last year when budgeting for the 2012-13 budget year, the council voted in favor of adding two additional police officers for traffic patrol.

Former Councilman Bruce Hanson pushed for the additional officers, citing the upcoming construction.

“Two of our major arterials, I-35 and FM2181, are being expected to go under construction in the near future. We already have some traffic issues occurring on those roads. It is an important step to go forward with that,” Hanson said during a meeting last year.

Mayor Paul Ruggiere said in a recent council meeting that he expects the interstate’s expansion to have positive effects on the city and the surrounding area.

He also said that some of the city’s road improvement and traffic mobility projects are related to the I-35E project.

In other agenda items, the council will also discuss the design, construction and how to proceed with granting of easements for a proposed 1.5 million-gallon ground water storage tank at the Lake Sharon Pump Station.

According to city staff officials, the City Council funded the design and construction of the storage tank in the 2012-13 operating budget.

The tank is estimated to cost approximately $1.5 million, according to city documents.

City staff officials say that they’ve been working on the tanks design with a consultant for the past 10 months and recently completed the bidding process.

The construction of the tank will require easements from neighborhood park property for water lines, sewer lines and a portion of the tank.

Before any easements can be granted on the park property, a public hearing must be held and a notice must be provided at least 30 days prior to the public hearing.

A copy of the entire agenda is available on the city’s website, cityofcorinth.com. The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at city hall, located at 3300 Corinth Parkway.

JOHN D. HARDEN can be reached at 940-566-6882 and via Twitter at @JDHarden.


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