SL 1853 – Madisonville relief route
Skip to main content

SL 1853 – Madisonville relief route

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 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.


The 2014 Feasibility Study showed that a relief route connecting SH 21 from the west of I-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 I-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.

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

As outlined below, TxDOT held several public meetings during development of the proposed relief route which provided the public opportunities to review and comment.

  • July 22, 2014: an open house presented the initial study area for a new location relief route on the west side of Madisonville.
  • March 7, 2017: an open house presented a revised study area and route alternatives located on the south side Madisonville.
  • Dec. 4, 2017: a subsequent open house presented the Preferred Relief Route Alternative on the south side of Madisonville.
  • Nov. 12, 2019: an open house presented the initial schematic design (roadway geometric layout) of the Preferred Relief Route Alternative.

Where we are now

Through a series of public meetings and evaluations, a preferred relief route alternative on the south side of Madisonville has been designed. The proposed project would provide a 4-lane highway, two 12-foot wide travel lanes in each direction separated by a grassy median. The travel lanes would be bounded by 4-foot wide inside and 10-foot wide outside shoulders. The proposed right of way width on the relief route would be between 300 and 380 feet. There would be grade separations at the crossings of SH 90, SH 75, I-45, and Pee Dee Lane. Entrance and exit ramps would provide access to SH 90 and SH 75, and new ramps along I-45 would provide access to and from the relief route.

The project is funded and expected to go to construction in late 2026.

Get involved