Transportation

Long-Running 290 Construction Project Is Nearing An End

There’s good news for commuters who’ve been braving the work zones on U.S. 290. Officials say the nearly seven-year-old project is almost over.

It’s one of the most expensive road projects ever in Texas with a price tag of $2.5 billion. That’s the widening of U.S. 290 from the 610 Loop to Waller County.

Project spokesman Mike Zientek said the project has had its challenges, considering they’ve had to keep traffic moving through construction zones while that work is taking place.

“In a way it’s like being in your house and living there while it’s being completely remodeled,” said Zientek.

But after years of detours and lane closures that work is almost finished. Zientek said they’re still on target for completing the main lane work at the end of the year.

“We know it can be tough,” said Zientek. “Construction’s difficult. There is a lot of construction all over our area. And in a sense it’s a good thing because that means you’ve got growth. You’ve got people moving here.”

The project includes the widening of U.S. 290 to five lanes in each direction between the 610 Loop to Highway 6. There will be four lanes each way from Highway 6 to the Grand Parkway. From there you’ll have three lanes on each side between the Grand Parkway and FM 2920 in Waller.

As for what’s happening right now, Zientek said work is still underway along much of the corridor. Crews are busy at the 610 Loop and on the 290 westbound lanes between the Loop and Dacoma. They’ve also been focused on reopening the FM 529 westbound entrance just outside the Beltway.

On the other end of the project, Zientek said construction is substantially complete between the Grand Parkway and Waller.

Now there is one part of the project that won’t be finished at year’s end, and that’s bridge work at Highway 6 and FM 1960. Zientek said the bridge should be completed in 2019.

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Gail Delaughter

Gail Delaughter

Transportation Reporter

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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