SH 21 through downtown Madisonville is a heavily congested primary connection between I-45 and SH 90. The current SH 21 roadway provides few widening options to accommodate local and through traffic.  In 2014 TxDOT conducted a feasibility study to determine the effectiveness of a relief route from SH 21 west of Madisonville to I-45 as a means of relieving congestion and increasing mobility.

The 2014 Feasibility Study showed that relief route connecting SH 21 from the west of IH 45 would improve local and regional mobility. It would accomplish this by reducing the amount of non-local traffic through town by providing a more direct and quicker route to IH 45.  This would result in improved traffic flow and safety as local traffic would see a reduction in congestion, delays, accidents and structural impacts to the roadway network.

Based on input from local stakeholders, TxDOT has subsequently determined that it would be prudent to consider the possible future need for a full loop around Madisonville.  Therefore, TxDOT is currently in the process of evaluating the feasibility for such a project.

Purpose and Need

The purpose of the SH 21 relief route is to connect regional traffic in the Madisonville area, which will relieve SH 21 (Main Street) and surrounding roadways from through traffic between I-45, SH 75, SH 90 and SH 21.

The proposed relief route is expected to:

  • Address traffic growth: Traffic through Madisonville is expected to increase from 13,000 to 18,500 vehicles per day by 2035.
  • Improve regional I-45 connectivity: A relief route would increase regional mobility, moving traffic efficiently to and from I-45.
  • Improve local circulation: Reducing the amount of through traffic in the downtown Madisonville area would enhance mobility within the surrounding area.
  • Improve safety: The relief route is expected to reduce crash rates on SH 21, SH 90 and SH 75. There were more than 200 crashes in the past five years along these roadways including one fatality.
  • Preserve local infrastructure: Traffic reduction (especially trucks) would maintain the integrity of the existing roadway and reduce the long-term cost of maintenance.

Get Involved

On May 27, 2014 the preliminary alternatives were presented at a community workgroup. Representatives from Madison County, the City of Madisonville and the Madison Independent School District identified recommended alternatives.

At an open house on July 22, 2014 the public viewed and provided comments on the primary alternatives.

On March 7, 2017 the community was able to comment on alternatives for a relief route around Madisonville.

On December 4, 2017 TxDOT hosted an open house public meeting for the public to review and comment on the preferred alternative.