Antonio Area Freeway System
Loop 1604 from Potranco to US 90
page last updated December 12, 2018
1604 from Potranco Rd. to US 90
Status: Under construction (72% complete)
This project will upgrade Loop
1604 at this location from a four-lane divided highway to a four-lane,
expressway. This includes adding
an underpass at Dove Canyon/Falcoln Wolf, expanding the existing overpass at
Marbach, and adding continuous access
and entrance and exit ramps. The expansion will be completed
the existing northbound lanes to the northbound access road, converting
the existing southbound lanes to northbound expressway lanes, and
constructing the remaining lanes (southbound expressway and access
road.) Unbeknownst to most motorists, the existing divided
was orignially designed to eventually be expanded to an expressway as
described above; this will expedite the work a bit, reduce the project's cost, and minimize
project is also building a direct connector (flyover) from SB Loop 1604 to
EB US 90 and the existing cloverleaf ramp from southbound Loop 1604 to eastbound US 90
will be removed. The existing signalized intersections at US 90
remain, but a second overpass for Loop 1604 over US 90 has been built for the northbound lanes and the
previously-existing overpass is now used for the southbound lanes. The divided
highway now endd just south of US 90 and merges into the existing
cost of this project is $64.1 million and is being paid for with local
funds from the Alamo Regional Mobility Authority as part of the larger
$825 five-year regional transportation plan announced in January 2014.
A separate project on US 90 converted the US 90 access roads to one-way and built the turnaround
from westbound to eastbound US 90 at Loop 1604, which should remove an appreciable
amount of traffic from the intersections at Loop 1604.
project will help
Staggering ongoing growth in this area of
Antonio necessitates upgrading this
roadway. The new
overpasses at the currently signalized intersections will allow for
continuous free-flowing traffic through the corridor. The four
expressway lanes are anticipated to handle the projected traffic in
this corridor for the next 20 years. The
US 90 will remove that traffic from the remaining signalized
at US 90.
Timeline: Construction began in early 2017 and estimated completion is mid 2019. Click here for the latest status.
- Why was the crossover at Emory Peak removed? Nobody told us when we moved here it would be removed someday.
was always planned for that crossover to be temporary and be removed
when Loop 1604 was expanded. The developer of the Laurel Mountain Ranch
subdivision was aware of this and should have informed buyers.
- There was
already a crossover at Emory Peak. Why close it and add a new crossover
at Falcon Wolf/Dove Canyon where there wasn't one previously?
freeway corridor, one mile is generally considered to be the ideal
interval for crossovers. When crossovers are closer than that, it
complicates entrance and exit ramp placement and shortens
weaving areas or forces some traffic to traverse an additional signalized
intersection, all of which decreases safety and increases
congestion and motorist inconvenience. Emory Peak is located just 1/2 mile from Marbach
whereas Falcon Wolf/Dove Canyon is located at just about one
mile from Marbach and a little over one mile from Potranco; in other
words, it's more ideally located for a crossover. Furthermore, the Falcon Wolf/Dove Canyon
location connects a roadway on both sides of Loop 1604, also a
more ideal situation. Were it not for the steep elevation differences
there, a crossover would have been built there many years ago.
Finally, it is planned for Falcon Wolf to eventually extend to Marbach
on the east
(and it essentially already does now via Big Wolf Creek) and for Dove
Canyon to eventually
extend to Grosenbacher via American Lotus on the west, thus making it a future
east-west thoroughfare and making the overpass at Loop 1604 more
logical. In other words, the overpass at Falcon Wolf/Dove Canyon is one
important piece of a puzzle that's still being put together.
- Why are the new sections of Loop 1604 only four lanes? It needs to be six lanes or more.
number of lanes for a new roadway is based on current and projected
traffic volumes for the next 20 years. Twenty years is the accepted
planning horizon for a couple of reasons. First, that's the length of
time before a road will need major repairs and upgrades simply due to
age (i.e. the road's expected lifespan). Second, that length of time is
the longest that any projections can be considered even remotely
reasonable. Since nobody has a crystal ball, traffic
projections are "educated guesses" based on the
best data available for future development in an area and past growth.
Roads are then planned based on those projections. In the case of the
new segments of Loop 1604, those projections show that four lanes will
be adequate for the 20 years. TxDOT, as a steward of taxpayer dollars,
cannot spend more than they can justify, a policy I'm sure most
taxpayers support, especially with all the other needs that need
- Is the one-way access road at the eastbound US 90 exit to Loop 1604 permanent? If so, why?
has been a heated topic of conversation especially among residents
of the Canyon Crossing subdivision off of Cagnon
Road southwest of the US 90/Loop 1604 intersection. The answer is yes,
this is a permanent change. The reason why is simple-- safety. One-way
access roads have been proven to reduce crashes dramatically. In this
case especially, the left turn onto Cagnon was fairly close to the
exit from US 90. Therefore, high-speed traffic exiting from US 90 was
quickly in a conflict with that left-turning traffic.
Furthermore, one-way access roads are much more efficient from a
traffic-carrying perspective-- an important consideration in a growing
area. A future expansion project on US 90 will extend the access road
to the west, which could help mitigate the impact of this change. (Note
that this change was actually not done as part of the project discussed
on this page, but I've addressed it here because this page covers
ongoing construction at this location.)
the image below to open the detailed schematic for this
project from TxDOT with my own annotations added to help clarify and
explain the various elements. The schematic will
open in a new window that you can scroll and zoom.
are somewhat large and may take a few seconds to open.)
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