Tower 55 Improvement Project Begins - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Tower 55 Improvement Project Begins

Work beings to relieve neighborhood frequently cut off by trains blocking public streets



    Work on the Tower 55 railroad improvement project begins in an effort to keep people from climbing over and under stopped trains in a neighborhood near downtown Fort Worth. (Published Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014)

    A massive railroad improvement project near downtown Fort Worth could cause headaches for drivers the rest of the week.

    As part of the $100 million Tower 55 project, Union Pacific Railroad is expanding the rail bridge that runs above Lancaster Avenue near Interstate 35.

    Construction crews will be forced to Lancaster Avenue from Aug. 13-16 and again on Aug. 20-24. Union Pacific said both the eastbound and westbound lanes of Lancaster Avenue at the rail bridge will be closed to through traffic, but detour signs will be posted.

    The project will ease congestion that earlier this year trapped dozens of Fort Worth homeowners in their own neighborhood near East Peach Street, completely blocked in by trains idling on the tracks for up to three hours.

    Union Pacific said the nearby Tower 55 interchange was overcrowded, causing significant delays.

    NBC 5 crews saw children shimmying between rail cars and even crawling underneath them as they headed to class in the morning.

    Since the spring, a temporary solution has been to keep the trains waiting further back from the neighborhood. The new and improved Tower 55 interchange is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

    The project is funded by Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp., local funds from Fort Worth, and federal grants from the Department of Transportation.