Wacky TxDOT I-45 Redo Renderings Now Available in Mind-Boggling Video Format

If you were dazzled by the wide swaths of concrete laneage and complicated color-coded spaghetti interchange entanglements in the TxDOT renderings released last week — but had trouble comprehending the massive scale of the proposed reroute of I-45 around Downtown — you’ll want to try this second go at it. The state transportation agency has now produced a video version of its freeway-rewrapping proposal, complete with tiny little animated cars and trucks moving along 3-D representations of those new wide surfaces. It’s so mesmerizing, many viewers may not even notice what happened to the Pierce Elevated.

Video: TxDOT, via Houston Chronicle

North Freeway Downtown Rewrap

14 Comment

  • I love watching the cars “fall” off the Hardy northbound connector and disappear into thin air.

  • A couple thoughts. The extended downtown connector – not the part that goes to McKinney, but the part that goes way over to Cullen Center or somewhere in that area – seems excessive. Just connect it with Houston Avenue or let the people take McKinney Avenue and drive through downtown. It’s an unnecessary blight over the bayou park, Houston’s “front lawn.”

    It’s intriguing how they show the freeway deck park behind Minute Maid merging into the park on the banks of the bayou. That could be a pretty expansive space to walk around on.

  • 2030 is going to love this new highway

  • Wow, there going to just completely butcher Midtown around Wheeler Ave. Caroline, which is a great bike route, will be cut off into dead ends on each side of the freeway.

    The diagram shows the two metrorail red line tracks (NB + SB) converging into a single track to cross the freeway. I hope that’s just symbolic and doesn’t imply merging NB+SB into a single track – that would be a huge bottleneck for the red line.

  • I’d like to see the before, too, to understand the after.

  • I wonder how the on- and off-ramps will work for the doubled up sections

  • If any of this alleviates the clusterfuk I-45 has become from the 288/59 intersection Northbound to the N. Main exit, I’ll personally crack open my piggy bank and forward the proceeds to TXDOT.

  • i am still confused :(

  • Why does TXDOT feel it has to combine 45 and 59/69 along the GRB and combine the two most congested segments of the near downtown, at all? It makes a whole lot of sense to spread the traffic out by just routing the new 45 a little further east down I-10 and avoid the whole area.

    Vision, people, vision!

  • @ WR: The idea is to reduce the number of bottlenecks and to reduce the amount of traffic that is merging.as it approaches various ramps, especially on exits to the left. Adopting a single trunkline would do that, but…this specific plan is no panacea.

    I’m still very concerned that the amount of sheer capacity that they’re planning through there is going to be inadequate. I’m also concerned that the flow along the downtown grid is likely to become more heavily concentrated through east downtown and that the efficiency of the street-level grid (which is not a TXDoT project) may be undercut.. I’m concerned that neighborhoods south and southeast of downtown appear to have sharply reduced accessibility to Allen Parkway and Memorial Drive. I’m concerned that certain ramps dump traffic into parts of the grid that are not efficient enough to handle the traffic. And furthermore, this is an opportunity to tie together bi-directional managed lanes north and south all the way through downtown in order to serve the TMC and other cross-town traffic.

    This is a project that we’re all going to have to live with for a very very long time. It might even be the very last downtown-area freeway project. I’d rather that they spend billions of dollars of additional money than that they spend all that money and fix some problems only to cause new ones, while leaving some low-hanging fruit unpicked.

  • Very confusing to conceptualize, but I’m pretty sure I’ll be losing my home in the new 59-288 exchange : (

  • Another f-ed up redo. Our vision less bureaucrats at work. Leave the overpasses. NO more underpasses; in an areas that are flooding more frequently that is just stupid. Gerald Hines, the developer of the Galleria (a huge traffic generator ) proposed years ago making Richmond,Westheimer and San Felipe at the Rail road track underpasses. That would have been lovely- imagine the flooding ,the homeless /street people/etc. With this proposal, TxDot is working to reduce the homeless/ street people using the current under passes in/near Downtown-which the downtown stakeholders want to eliminate. It offend the fat cats having to view the less fortunate. Our government in action.

  • @Padraig, it’s awfully hard to have overpasses without underpasses.