15
   

And some Texas Roads Will Be Converted to Gravel

 
 
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 04:36 pm
One more feather in Perry's hat for if he runs for president again.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Citing a funding shortfall and the impact of a historic oil drilling boom, Texas Department of Transportation officials on Thursday announced plans to move forward with converting some roads in West and South Texas to gravel.

Approximately 83 miles of asphalt roads will be torn up and converted to “unpaved” roads, TxDOT Deputy Executive Director John Barton said. The speed limits on those roads will probably be reduced to 30 mph.

“We would do these immediately, and I would suspect we would continue to convert other roadway segments as we continue to move forward,” Barton told the Texas Transportation Commission.

All of the affected roads have been so heavily damaged by truck activity related to oil and natural gas exploration that they have become safety hazards, Barton said. The process of converting the roads to gravel can be done quickly but will probably be delayed a few weeks as TxDOT gets permission from the commissioners to lower the speed limits on all of the impacted segments, Barton said.

The impacted roads are in four South Texas counties — Live Oak, Dimmit, LaSalle and Zavala — and two West Texas counties — Reeves and Culberson. The list of impacted roads includes a three-mile stretch of frontage road for Interstate 37 in Live Oak County. Barton said a plant that processes oil and natural gas has dramatically increased the truck traffic on that road.


“Instead of whipping in at 70 miles per hour, they’ll have to move in there at 30 miles per hour,” Barton said.

TxDOT also announced plans to implement stricter weight limits on 518 miles of road in the parts of the state undergoing a drilling boom. The process, called “load posting,” will restrict most energy sector trucks from those roads, prompting some companies to find alternate routes to drilling sites.

“If they choose to do that, they may increase deterioration on those routes as well and we would have to load-post them too,” Barton said. Companies will be able to pay for permits to get around the weight restrictions in some cases, he said.

In recent years, miles of rural roads in West and South Texas have been destroyed via the weight of thousands of trucks associated with the drilling boom. The damage to roads has contributed to a surge in vehicular accidents in some communities.

The transportation commission took Barton’s announcement as a sobering example of how funding challenges have hobbled the agency’s operations. Commissioner Jeff Moseley described the decision as a “historical moment” for the agency.

Commissioner Fred Underwood wanted to make sure the public understood the reasoning behind the decisions.

“This is a safety issue,” Underwood said. “It’s not ‘our roads are bad and we’re not going to keep them up.’ It’s ‘our roads are bad and we’re trying to protect the driving public.’”

The announcement came as state lawmakers are having trouble finding consensus on a measure that would provide TxDOT with nearly $1 billion more in annual funding. Gov. Rick Perry has threatened to call a third special session if lawmakers can’t find common ground on the issue before the end of the current special session.

TxDOT told lawmakers earlier this year that it needed $4 billion in additional annual funding just to maintain current congestion. On top of that, agency officials requested an additional $1.6 billion to address road damage from energy sector development. During the regular legislative session that ended in May, lawmakers found the agency $200 million a year for its overall roadwork and a one-time $500 million infusion for energy development-related issues.
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Discussion • Score: 15 • Views: 2,301 • Replies: 45

 
Rockhead
 
  2  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 04:41 pm
@edgarblythe,
you and me should go into the truck tire business down there, ed.

it will be booming...
edgarblythe
 
  3  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 04:46 pm
Shades of the 1930s. What's next; buckboards keep right, fast horses only in center lane.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 04:56 pm
@Rockhead,
In downstate Delaware and Marylnd Eastern Shore, there are big businesses in REGROOVING old truck tires. AND THESE THINGS PASS INSPECTIONS
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 05:06 pm
The government is absolutely committed to no new funds. TXDOT could still get more funding, but Perry wants to shuffle existing money around to give it. That's why it needs a third special session. Lawmakers still don't know which programs they will have to rob.
mesquite
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 05:55 pm
@edgarblythe,
When I first read that, and since you did not cite a source, I thought it was an article from the Onion or similar satire site.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 06:19 pm
@mesquite,
It's the real thing. The other Texas road boondoggle - Virtually all new roads will be tollways. One i read about yesterday, probably Houston's Grand Parkway, will have no feeder roads for a very long stretch.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 06:24 pm
@edgarblythe,
Quote:
“We would do these immediately, and I would suspect we would continue to convert other roadway segments as we continue to move forward,”

Moving forward, the Texas way.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 06:32 pm
@parados,
Imagine having a new F-150 or Impala and driving those gravel roads, doing 30 MPH and getting the car torn up at the same time.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 07:22 pm
@edgarblythe,
Ive herd that TExas is slowly becoming "Blue" as the new Hispanic voters arent convinced about the conservative mindset.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 08:09 pm
@farmerman,
The problem with Hispanic voters, beyond gerrymandering of districts by the GOP, is, they refuse to vote. Not all of them of course. But in significant enough numbers to keep their voice from counting.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 08:43 pm
Lord the very simple solution of taxing the people tearing up the roads to repair the roads would never enter the minds of the GOP.
parados
 
  2  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 09:05 pm
@BillRM,
The problem is it's the energy companies that are destroying the roads. The people might demand that the state tax those companies to pay for what they are destroying. Can't have that.
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Thu 1 Aug, 2013 10:24 pm
@parados,
Another conservative state I wont be visiting.
0 Replies
 
mesquite
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 03:57 pm
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:
It's the real thing.

Yeah Ed, I found that out soon as I started checking. I wonder if TxDOT isn't doing this just as a way to force the legislature into coughing up more funding. This quote from the story caught my attention.
Quote:
TxDOT told lawmakers earlier this year that it needed $4 billion in additional annual funding just to maintain current congestion. On top of that, agency officials requested an additional $1.6 billion to address road damage from energy sector development. During the regular legislative session that ended in May, lawmakers found the agency $200 million a year for its overall roadwork and a one-time $500 million infusion for energy development-related issues.


Here in Arizona unpaved roads are a problem as they can deteriorate air quality below EPA standards.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 04:01 pm
The stumbling block to progress here is the governor. He will not allow new funding. Only robbing of other funds. Problem is, they have been robbing them for so long, there is very little left to take.
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 04:38 pm
@edgarblythe,
and he wants to be president...
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 04:51 pm
@Rockhead,
That's one thing he will never get close to.
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 05:01 pm
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:

That's one thing he will never get close to.


Amen Brother.

btw, I was thinking of a windshield/dent repair business for the impalas and cameros
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 2 Aug, 2013 05:27 pm
@chai2,
I would love to set up a body shop or something there.
 

Related Topics

Obama '08? - Discussion by sozobe
Let's get rid of the Electoral College - Discussion by Robert Gentel
McCain's VP: - Discussion by Cycloptichorn
McCain is blowing his election chances. - Discussion by McGentrix
Food Stamp Turkeys - Discussion by H2O MAN
The 2008 Democrat Convention - Discussion by Lash
Snowdon is a dummy - Discussion by cicerone imposter
GAFFNEY: Whose side is Obama on? - Discussion by gungasnake
 
  1. Forums
  2. » And some Texas Roads Will Be Converted to Gravel
Copyright © 2018 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 11/17/2018 at 02:56:32