Antonio Area Freeway System
Northeast Expansion (NEX) Project
last updated August 15, 2019
project has been redesigned
to build tolled managed lanes have been dropped. New non-tolled plans
have been released and this page contains the latest information about
those plans as well as historical information about previous proposals.
This is an interim page; more detailed information and schematics will be added soon.
is information about current expansion plans the history of previous plans to add
lanes to I-35.
component for previous proposed expansions of I-35 removed in 2018 (see
history below), TxDOT is now planning to expand I-35 by adding
non-tolled express lanes and HOV lanes from AT&T
Center Pkwy. to FM 1103. The new lanes will be elevated
(double-decked) south of FM 3009 and be at-grade
to FM 1103.
Unlike the double-decked freeways downtown, the upper levels on this project will be express lanes,
meaning there will be limited entrances and exits between FM 1103 and
downtown San Antonio. New flyovers will connect the upper levels
to Loop 1604, Pat Booker Rd., Loop 410 North, and Loop 410 South. There
will also be an intermediate access point with ramps connecting the
elevated lanes to the mainlanes near Schertz Pkwy (southbound entrance to express lanes,
northbound exit from express lanes.) The intent for the new lanes is to provide an express
corridor for longer-distance through traffic; this will benefit lower
level by removing that long distance traffic from those lanes.
project will also include multiple ramp revisions and frontage road
improvements, as well as new overpasses and intersection improvements at
Wiederstein Rd. and at FM 2252. Access to adjacent properties will generally stay the same as it is now.
between the two upper levels will be provided for emergency access
at three locations in the corridor: between Eisenhauer and
Walzem, near O'Connor, and near Olympia Pkwy.
planned cross-section for most of I-35 NEX project
funding constraints will require the project to be divided into
phases. Funding is currently available for the section from Loop 410
North to FM 3009, including the new connectors to Loop 410 North and
to Loop 1604 to the west of I-35. The
remaining segments-- from Loop 410 to AT&T Center Parkway and from
FM 3009 to FM 1103-- are currently unfunded. TxDOT
and the MPO are working to obtain additional funding for those
segments. TxDOT applied for federal INFRA grant for this project, but it was not selected to be funded.
Additional state funding for the project will be considered by the Texas Transportation
Commission in late August. If additional funding is obtained, the project phasing will likely change.
1996, a Major
Investment Study of the I-35 northeast corridor recommended
barrier-separated express lanes, truck lanes, and/or HOV lanes.
However, acute funding shortages in the early 2000s caused this plan to
be shelved. In 2009, the Alamo Area Regional Mobility Authority (ARMA)
resurrected the plan as a secondary phase for a local tollway
Under this plan, the new lanes would be built as tolled managed lanes.
As the plan was further fleshed-out, it was determined that the new
lanes would need to be elevated along most of the route from downtown
to the FM 1103 area. The environmental study for this project was
completed in 2015.
that time, tolling became deprecated both locally and statewide as the
legislature and citizens approved new funding sources for highways. As
a result, the various local planned toll projects were successively
"de-tolled" as new funding sources were identified for them. Tolls were removed from the I-35
project in June 2018.
What is a managed lane?
is a lane where the operational strategies of the
lane are adjusted in real-time as required to ensure that the lane
free-flowing, thus providing for a guaranteed travel time for users of
the lane. For example, toll rates or vehicle occupancy
requirements may fluctuate based on
conditions or time of day. Typically, managed lanes
toll-free access for buses, carpools, and emergency vehicles while
single-occupancy vehicles (i.e. solo drivers) can use the lane by
paying a variable-rate toll.
is this beneficial? Besides providing a clear way for public
transportation and emergency vehicles, it also gives commuters who want
or need to get where they're going faster an opportunity to
bypass congestion by paying a toll to use any excess capacity
the lane. Every motorist who opts to do so removes one more vehicle
the toll-free lanes which can help ease congestion. The
resulting toll revenue
helps to subsidize for the road, saving scarce tax dollars for other
sites of interest