• August 21, 2019

Landgraf: Demand better roads - Odessa American: Local News

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Landgraf: Demand better roads

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Posted: Thursday, August 8, 2019 10:59 am

Texas State Rep. Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) is encouraging his fellow West Texans to submit public comments to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) demanding funding for transportation projects in West Texas.

“Now is the time to make sure your voice is heard loud and clear,” Landgraf said. “We’ve never had a greater opportunity to highlight the importance of prioritizing state investment in the infrastructure of the Permian Basin.”

The Transportation Commission is responsible for directing funds in the TxDOT budget for certain projects. The commission is currently deciding how to allocate funds in the Permian Basin under its 2020 Unified Transportation Program (UTP).

In order to receive funding from TxDOT a project must be added to the UTP, TxDOT’s 10-year plan that guides the development of transportation projects across the state. The Texas Transportation Commission approves the UTP annually in accordance with Texas state law. Projects can be added to the UTP based on recommendations by TxDOT staff, TxDOT district engineers, or through public comment. The public comment period for the 2020 UTP ends early next week.

Public comments (due by Aug. 12) can be submitted in the following ways:

>> By leaving a comment online using this link: https://www.txdot.gov/contact-us/form.html?id=utp-email

>> By mailing comments to:

TxDOT

Attention: Peter Smith

P.O. Box 149217

Austin, TX 78714-9217

>>By calling this number: (800) 687-8108.

The UTP already accounts for big projects on I-20, and other major roads. However one key corridor through Winkler and Loving counties has been left off the list.

Landgraf, via email, said a sample statement in support of making Highway 302 to a 4-lane highway could be submitted like this:

“I respectfully request that a project to add capacity to SH 302 between US 285 in Reeves County and FM 2019 in Ector County be included in the 2020 Unified Transportation Program (UTP).

SH 302 is surrounded by sand mining operations and provides a direct route from Odessa to the booming Delaware Basin. This unique combination of economic activity has led to massive increases in commercial motor vehicle traffic on SH 302, causing significant road degradation and countless traffic accidents.”

Odessa, TX

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