TxDOT holding public hearing to widen portion of Loop 88 (FM 1585)

TxDOT holding public hearing to widen portion of Loop 88 (FM 1585)

LUBBOCK COUNTY, TX (KCBD) - The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) is scheduled to hold a public hearing tonight on a proposed project to upgrade and widen Loop 88 (FM 1585), from 0.5 miles north of U.S. 62 to 0.5 miles east of U.S. 87 in Lubbock County, Texas.

During the hearing, TxDOT will present proposed plans to convert the existing two lane rural roadway to an access-controlled four-lane divided freeway with frontage roads and ramps. Interchanges will be developed at cross streets and a multi-level interchange is proposed at US 87. The project limits are from 0.5 miles north of US 62 to 0.5 miles east of US 87; a projected length of 12.4 miles.

The proposed project would require approximately 503 acres of additional right of way and includes the acquisition or relocation of 62 commercial and 75 residential properties. Information regarding the state's Relocation Assistance Program, the benefits and services for affected property owner, as well as information about the tentative schedules for right of way acquisition and construction can be obtained from the TxDOT district office at 135 E Slaton Hwy, Lubbock, TX. Relocation assistance is available for displaced persons and businesses. TxDOT personnel will be on hand at the hearing to answer citizen questions regarding the acquisition process.

The proposal leaving residents uneasy.

"I came tonight because when we bought our house two years ago nobody informed us that this was even a possibility...In that two years that I've lived here I've seen lots of new businesses going up so of course this is going to impact us it's going to impacts everyone along that route," said Pauline Franklin, a concerned resident.

Officials say it is necessary because of development, but it's not just the relocating that has residents upset its the amount of tax dollars as well.

"Now I just look at how much money the tax payers in Texas are wasting with this project. That all of those businesses that we now have to pay for because they allowed them to be built its going to cost us more money to buy that land to put this road in because you allowed them to build businesses, said Franklin."

The proposed project is in its third phase.

The 1st phase was to determine the feasibility and concluded in 2010.

The 2nd phase was additional analysis and identifying a specific route.

Now, the 3rd phase consisting of environmental and engineering studies.

"I fully expected 130th street would eventually be maybe two lanes each direction with a  turn lane, no where in my mind did I consider that this was going to have frontage roads, overpasses, and everything else," said Franklin.

They expect to begin construction in 2021 and estimate it to take 10-15 years.

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