POSTED: Friday, January 21, 2011 - 4:43pm
UPDATED: Saturday, January 22, 2011 - 9:32am
SMITH COUNTY-- TXDOT has been planning an outer loop for Tyler for the past 30 years. But now, Northeast Texas Regional Mobility gave TXDOT a little help---a 12-million dollar toll grant. TXDOT and NET RMA are teaming up to to make toll 49 out of Loop 49 and two other projects.
Many Smith County and Tyler officials gathered Friday morning to break ground for one part of Toll 49--a 10.2 mile road that will stretch from Highway 31 up to Interstate-20.
Parts of Loop 49 are already done south of Tyler, but many cannot see how it is helping with traffic. Officials promise today, however, that the new Toll 49 will be different.
TXDOT and NET MRA plan to add to what's already loop 49 making a 25 mile road on the outskirts of Tyler. They say it will save about 20 minutes of travel time.
When Toll 49 is done, drivers will be able to go to I-20 without red lights or stop signs, but they'll have to pay a toll. The road is expected to be done by December 2012 as a two lane highway. Officials say the future plan, however, is to make it a four lane highway.
To see plans, go here: http://www.netrma.org/loop1_5.asp?seg=3b