The TxDOT Update
News and Information from the Texas Department of Transportation

TxDOT Mission

Work with others to provide safe and reliable transportation solutions for Texas.

TxDOT Goals

  • Maintain a safe system
  • Address congestion
  • Connect Texas communities
  • Best in class state agency

TxDOT Values

  • Trust
  • Integrity
  • Responsibility
  • Excellence
  • Service

In this issue

  • Transportation Commission Actions
  • Plan to Attend the 2013 Texas Transportation Forum!
  • TxDOT Cost Savings
  • Americas Interchange Completed
  • Small Business Briefings
  • Driving Safely Through I-35 Construction
  • TxDOT Podcast: Scott Belcher, Intelligent Transportation Society of America
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February 4, 2013

Editor's note: We will not publish the TxDOT Update on Feb. 18, President's Day. Have a safe holiday.

Here's our roundup of Texas Department of Transportation news and events. If you have any questions, comments or just want to know more about something you read here, send a message to

Transportation Commission Actions

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The Texas Transportation Commission approves temporary discount toll rates for trucks on SH 130 and SH 45SE.

The Texas Transportation Commission has approved a new sponsorship program that could raise as much as $3.5 million annually from the private sector to pay for roadside maintenance projects. TxDOT will continue to manage highway maintenance services. Potential sponsorships could include donations for litter pickup, mowing services, vegetation management and maintenance at the state's safety rest areas and travel information centers. The Commission approved the program at its Jan. 31 regular monthly meeting. In other business, the Commission took the following actions:

  • Established temporary discount toll rates on SH 130, Segments 1-4, and SH 45SE, charging the two-axle rate for all vehicles, regardless of classification, from Feb. 4 to March 3.
  • Authorized issuing a request for qualifications for the development, design, construction, financing, maintenance and operation of all or part of the SH 183 Managed Lanes Project in Dallas and Tarrant counties.
  • Authorized entering into an agreement with the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority for the development, construction, operation and maintenance of the MoPac Improvement Project in Travis County.

Read more »

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Plan to Attend the 2013 Texas Transportation Forum!

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Make plans to attend the 8th Annual Texas Transportation Forum, set for Feb. 17-19 at the Hilton Austin. Transportation experts, government leaders and others will gather at the Forum to discuss innovative ways to approach future challenges, including the Panama Canal expansion, the state’s growing energy opportunities and how technology is reshaping transportation options.

Speakers include Harvey Rosenblum, executive vice president and director of research at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas; Silvia Marucci, Panama Canal Authority; Harris County Judge Ed Emmett; U.S. Rep. Roger Williams, U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee; State Sen. Robert Nichols, chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, and other transportation leaders. Another highlight of the Forum will be the first Texas visit of the Google self-driving car.  Google team members will be on hand to talk with attendees about the vehicle and the future of driving. Wednesday, Feb. 6, is the last day to register online. Register now for your seat at the table. We hope to see you in Austin!

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TxDOT Cost Savings

As TxDOT strives to be a best-in-class agency by working safely and smartly, we are also seeking opportunities to improve our practices and capture cost savings. Please take a moment to browse our recent cost savings achievements — $270 million in savings to date — which reflect the work of resolute, knowledgeable and collaborative professionals determined to solve our state's toughest transportation challenges and be good stewards of taxpayer money.

Check it out »

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Americas Interchange Completed

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The Americas Interchange in El Paso.

TxDOT and community leaders recently celebrated the completion of three connectors from Phase I of the Americas Interchange project on I-10 and Loop 375 in East El Paso. The first phase, completed ahead of schedule and under budget, is part of the $141 million project to construct three direct connectors, widen I-10 and Loop 375 at the direct connector approach areas, realign frontage roads, relocate utilities, improve drainage, add aesthetic treatments and other associated interchange improvements. More connectors will be built, with the next scheduled phase to begin this spring. Construction is expected to finish in early 2015. The project is a successful partnership between the city of El Paso, the El Paso Metropolitan Planning Organization and TxDOT.

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Small Business Briefings

TxDOT's Office of Civil Rights Supportive Services conducts briefings around the state for small, minority- and women-owned businesses, providing contract opportunities and information on how to do business with TxDOT and the state. The briefings offer breakout sessions covering: small and minority-owned certifications; resources for business development; marketing for state contracts and information on current and upcoming TxDOT projects.

For more information »

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Driving Safely Through I-35 Construction

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Navigating construction areas can be difficult and risky for drivers and workers. As TxDOT moves forward with one of its largest construction projects in department history — expanding more than 100 miles of I-35 in Central Texas — educating the public on the necessity of driving safely through work zones is a top priority. To better inform Texans about the extensive construction on I-35, TxDOT has added a new level to its DriveTexas mapping tool: a dynamic traffic map that provides real-time information on closures affecting the interstate. Users can find information regarding closures on main lanes, frontage roads, ramps and cross streets, as well as real-time speeds. The map features full details on each closure, active and upcoming, as well as one-click zoom capability. Access the map here.

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TxDOT Podcast: Scott Belcher, Intelligent Transportation Society of America

The weekly TxDOT Podcast keeps you updated on the latest transportation news and issues, and new episodes are published every Friday on the TxDOT website,

Intelligent transportation systems, which range from synchronizing traffic signals to adaptive cruise control, have been on the rise around the world for the past several years. How they affect you depends on where you live and how you move between your destinations. In this week's episode, we talk with Scott Belcher, president and CEO of the Intelligent Transportation Society of America, for more on the technology behind today's and tomorrow's transportation systems. (This episode originally aired in February 2012.) Episodes are also available on iTunes.

Listen to Podcast »

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