Proposed I-35E Expansion Faces Funding Problems

State does not have money available for project


Denton County officials say they are not pleased with how a proposed expansion of  Interstate 35E is shaping up.

State funds currently are not available for the $4.5 billion project, which would expand the highway from Carrollton to Denton.

John Polster, Denton County transportation consultant, said funding the project could be a problem.

Denton County is the only group that has committed money at this point. The county has come up with $600 million in toll revenue and bond money, but it doesn't want to be the only player in the game.

"Right now, there isn't any funding committed from the state of Texas, the highway commission," he said. "There's no funds committed from the Regional Metropolitan Planning Organization. If nothing changes right now, there's a good chance that Denton County will keep their $600 million."

The expansion would expand the interstate to eight general purpose lanes, four managed or tolled lanes and up to six frontage lanes.

"It's a lot to do. It's a lot to swallow," Polster said.

Residents say I-35E needs to expand.

"It's pretty bad, especially in the morning," Corinth resident Carolyn Stacy said. "If there's a wreck, you could be totally stopped for like an hour or so."

The committee planning the expansion will meet Nov. 22 at 1:30 p.m. at the Denton County Transportation Authority headquarters in Lewisville. This meeting will be open to the public.

The committee is made up of the Texas Department of Transportation, county commissioners and the Regional Metropolitan Planning Organization.

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