Having trouble sifting through some of the massive freeway jumbles in the latest plans for that major I-45 reroute between Downtown and the Beltway? This new video (making the rounds this month as TxDOT hosts a set of public meetings to chat about the project) may or may not help you out. The 10-minute animation shows off what the project plans look like in multicolored, car-spangled 3D action, dragging viewers slowly along the entire project route from Spur 521 up to Beltway 8.
The project plans pull 45 over to the east side of Downtown, to line up alongside US 59 and dive underground behind the George R. Brown convention center. Various flavors of new express lanes, managed lanes, managed express lanes, and connectors weave into and out of a massive new 45-59-10 junction as shown above, all labeled by color. Here’s a clip of the above video showing just that section of the animation:
Here’s the proposed new look of the area where I-45 currently skirts the western edge of Downtown toward the Pierce Elevated — a set of Downtown connector ramps trickles out drivers as far as Jefferson St. instead, as shown here:
Below, I-45 can be spotted twisting east alongside I-10 toward 59, and the set of new Downtown drop-off ramps split off, highlighted in orange. A pair of I-10 express lanes cuts through the fray in blue, evidently meant to avoid the 45-10 exchange traffic. The latest plans may give U of H Downtown a slightly better idea of how much of its newly purchased land to the north of I-10 will be freeway-ed over as part of the changes.
There’s lot more to parse in the designs — including TxDOT’s estimate that the whole thing will “displace approximately 168 single-family residences, 1,067 multi-family residences, 331 businesses, 4 places of worship, and 2 schools.” If you missed out on the 2 public meetings held earlier this week, there’s 1 more scheduled for Monday evening over at the Saint Arnold brewery.
- Previously on Swamplot: Big I-45 Downtown Rerouting, Grand Parkway Expansion Get Go-Aheads; TxDOT To Pierce Elevated: Your Years Are Numbered, Probably; TxDOT’s Plans for Freeway Expansion Around and Below the Newly Protected Cheek-Neal Coffee Building; Wacky TxDOT I-45 Redo Renderings Now Available in Mind-Boggling Video Format; The 5 Wackiest Images from TxDOT’s Plans To Reroute I-45 and Abandon the Pierce Elevated
Images and Video: HNTB and TxDOT