PFLUGERVILLE, Texas (KXAN) — The Texas Department of Transportation and Pflugerville city leaders held a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday for a major construction project on State Highway 130.
Crews will begin working to add another lane in both directions from State Highway 45 North to US 290.
TxDOT said this section of the highway has become much more congested since it was completed in 2006, so the additional lanes should help ease traffic in this rapidly developing area between Travis and Williamson counties.
“When we built SH 130, we certainly anticipated some growth,” Linda Sexton, the deputy director for the toll operations division, said, “but not at the level it’s grown over the past couple of years.”
The widening project is expected to last two years, according to TxDOT. During that time crews will add the two new lanes in three phases.
“We feel it’s really going to help folks travel north and south on 130 during peak hours,” John Peters, a TxDOT assistant area engineer based in Georgetown, said.
The expansion comes just 12 years after the tollway opened. State and local leaders, like Pflugerville Mayor Victor Gonzales, admit that development in the area happened much more quickly than they all anticipated, which led to traffic problems on the highway.
“Pflugerville has grown by 77 percent since 2006, so we have a bigger population,” Mayor Gonzales said. “There’s more folks on the road getting in and out of Pflugerville.”
The number of lanes may soon change, but one thing about the highway won’t. TxDOT said there are no plans to take away the tolls because they provide funding for ongoing maintenance and other reinvestments in the roads.
Drivers will have to slow down during the next two years of construction. The speed limit will be reduced to 70 mph instead of 80.
Bradley Hall, who takes SH 130 to work every day, said the two years of construction should be worth it in the end.
“I was surprised that it was going to take that long,” Hall said, “but I guess it’s part of living in a growing city.”
The project will cost $36.7 million to complete, according to TxDOT. The agency said that money is coming from funds left over from initial construction of the highway.