Transportation

Construction On The Bolivar Peninsula’s Only Hurricane Evacuation Route Nears Completion

Over 2,000 residents rely on a single highway to get them off the Bolivar Peninsula in case of a hurricane.

Since last summer crews have been working on State Highway 87, the only route off the Bolivar Peninsula at the southernmost tip of Galveston County.

“This is a way of trying to provide a higher elevation for the roadway,” said TxDOT spokesman Danny Perez. “So when we do have issues of high tide folks will be able to get off the peninsula much faster and then have better access.”

The $21 million project encompasses about a seven-mile stretch of Highway 87 from Rollover Pass to State Highway 124. It’s being elevated to 7.5 feet above sea level. The old elevation was 5.5 feet.

“It’s a pretty significant length of road so to overlay it and continue to overlay it, it does take some time,” Perez told News 88.7. “What you do is you add a layer of asphalt and you continue to build up.”

Perez also said it’s been a challenge to keep traffic moving on the two-lane road while crews are doing the overlay.

“If there’s high tide that’s going to disrupt the work zone,” said Perez. “So we’ve looked at ways of minimizing those impacts and continuing the work.”

Another element of the project included straightening out the curve where Highway 87 meets Highway 124, which has been one of the roadway’s more flood-prone segments.

“It pushes up against that concrete barrier and the water does make its way onto the roadway,” said Perez. “So having that curve further inland is definitely beneficial.”

TxDOT said the project is now over 50% complete and is expected to be finished later this year.

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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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