Notice of Availability of Finding No Significant Impact (FONSI) for proposed US 281 (Future I-69 C) project from FM 490 to SH 186/FM 107


Purpose:

This notice advises the public that TxDOT has issued a finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for the proposed US 281 (Future I-69 C) project from FM 490 to SH 186/FM 1017 in Hidalgo County, Texas.

Description:

The planned improvements to US 281 consist of reconstructing and upgrading the existing rural divided highway to interstate standards as part of the future I-69C. US 281 will be designated as I-69C once construction is complete. The proposed project would include widening the existing facility from a 4-lane divided highway to an urban freeway with continuous frontage roads in each direction. Specifically, the improvements include constructing 4 main lanes (2 in each direction) and 2-lane frontage roads in each direction. The ultimate completed improvements would add 2 main lanes (1 lane each direction) as future traffic warrants. Additionally, overpasses would be added at Laguna Seca Road, Red Gate Road, and Los Venados Drive. The length of the proposed project is approximately 7.04 miles. The purpose of the proposed project would be to enhance mobility, safety, and improve traffic operations along US 281 (future I-69C).

The proposed project will be constructed generally within the existing right-of-way (ROW) which varies between 200 feet and 320 feet. However, approximately 65.38 acres of additional ROW will be required, at select locations, to upgrade the facility. The proposed project would potentially impact two residential properties, a City of Edinburg water utility facility and a non-functional windmill.

To avoid noise impacts that may result from future development adjacent to a proposed highway project, a traffic noise analysis is included in the final environmental assessment (EA), which includes predicted noise impact contours for currently undeveloped areas. These impact contours are intended as a general guide to assist local planning officials and developers plan and construct new activities in locations that would not result in traffic noise impacts. On the date of approval/clearance of an EA/FONSI (including the traffic noise analysis) for a proposed highway project, TxDOT is no longer responsible for providing noise abatement for new development. Additionally, as TxDOT does not provide retroactive (retrofit) abatement (known as a Type II program), this project area would not be eligible for potential noise abatement until the next major highway improvement project.

Copies of the approved final EA and FONSI are available for public inspection at:
TxDOT Pharr District
600 W. I-2
Pharr, TX 78577

The environmental review, consultation, and other actions required by applicable Federal environmental laws for this project are being, or have been, carried-out by TxDOT pursuant to 23 U.S.C. 327 and a Memorandum of Understanding dated December 9, 2019, and executed by FHWA and TxDOT.

Contact:

TxDOT Pharr District
600 W. I-2
Pharr, TX 78577

(956) 702-6100

Email

Posted December 16, 2019