Bidding Begins on Direct Connector From 290 to I-10

There will be some short term pain for longer term gain at one of Houston's most notoriously tricky and congested freeway interchanges starting later this summer. Jack Williams explains.

It’s the 290, 610 and I-10 interchange, where all three major roadways converge in the same general area. Work to build a direct connector from 290 and the North Loop to I-10 is expected to start in July. This is TxDOT’s Karen Othon.

“This is going to give motorists who are coming in in the morning that want to get toward downtown, they will be able to access this director connector ramp that goes from 290 all the way over to I-10 and it keeps them off the 610 West Loop traffic. It prevents that weaving of everyone trying to get over, because you have your people who want to go downtown, and then you have your people who want to go to the Galleria area.”

This week, TxDOT accepted a low bid submitted by Houston-based Williams Brothers construction to do the work. Final approval on the bid is expected later this month. The work will cost about 150-million dollars and could take 45 months to complete.

“Motorists will see nightly closures and some weekend closures. Work is first going to take place on the 610 North Loop portion from Ella to the 610 and 290 interchange. They’re going to see work on the frontage roads first and they’re also going to see work done on the 290 inbound side from 34th to the interchange on the frontage road. Those are the two areas where work is going to start first.”

This will be only the first of $2.8 billion in improvements at the interchange. Other connectors are planned in the future, although funding for that work hasn’t been secured yet.