Contact: Kathi White
Phone: (903) 510-9267
Date: Nov. 17, 2017
LONVGIEW – The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) is excited to announce plans to open the next segment of the new FM2275/George Richey Road Extension in Longview. The $12.4 million project from McCann Road westward to SH 300 will be open to traffic by Monday.
According to TxDOT, remaining work will be conducted with the roadway open to traffic.
This project is part of a new location four-lane divided highway designed to provide a safer and more efficient east/west thoroughfare for the city of Longview. It stretches 4 miles from US 259 to SH 300. The contractor, East Texas Bridge, Inc., of Longview, started construction on this Phase II segment in summer 2016. Phase I from US 259 to McCann Road, at a cost of $34.3 million, opened to much fanfare in October 2016.
“I have had a lot of interested people asking me when FM 2275/George Richey Road will be open,” said Will Buskell, TxDOT Longview Area Engineer. “I keep telling them soon. Well, soon is here. Starting Monday, you will be able to drive straight from US 271 in Gladewater all the way through to US 259 in Longview. And, as an added feature, the new locations of George Richey between SH 300 and US 259 all have bike lanes and sidewalk. I think the public is excited about it and I look forward to using the road myself. Of course I have been driving through the project so I could "inspect" its construction. Overall, I think it’s a great project and I can't wait to see what develops along George Richey.”
The project was funded through a transportation partnership between the Longview Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), the City of Longview, Gregg County, the Longview Economic Development Corporation, and TxDOT. Local officials are ecstatic about the opening.
“TxDOT is always happy to work with local entities and communities on the common goal of improving our transportation system,” said TxDOT Tyler District Engineer Glenn Green. “This project provides a safer route while also enhancing mobility and connectivity for this area. It’s a great example of what can be accomplished through partnership and pooling resources.”
Gregg County Judge Bill Stoudt agrees.
“Gregg County is proud to be a part of this dynamic initiative to extend George Richey Road,” he said. “The importance of George Richey is what this project means to the community to provide connectivity, improve traffic and provide economic growth for the future."
Longview Mayor Andy Mack too touted the economic impact of the roadway.
"The importance of George Richey, a vital east-west connector, is that it will alleviate future traffic while fueling economic development,” said Mack. “Opening George Richey Road between SH 300 and US 259 will make access to the North Longview Business Park much easier.”
Mack credits the efforts of Gregg County, the City of Longview and the Longview Economic Development Corporation for advancing the project.
"This project would not be at the stage it is now, opening to traffic, if not for the vision and leadership of these three agencies. It is through their vision and combining the resources of local entities with the Texas Department of Transportation that made this project a reality, and open to traffic seven years earlier than originally planned."
George Richey Road is expected to ease congestion by offering a continuous center turn lane, dedicated bicycle lanes in the shoulders, and sidewalks on the south side of the roadway. It will also relieve parallel east/west corridors such as Hawkins Parkway and FM 1844 which have exceeded their capacity.
The Texas Department of Transportation is responsible for maintaining 80,000 miles of road and for supporting aviation, rail, and public transportation across the state. Through collaboration and leadership, we deliver a safe, reliable, and integrated transportation system that enables the movement of people and goods. Find out more at TxDOT.gov. "Like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.