The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is providing a $357 million Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan to Blueridge Transportation Group to add four toll lanes to SH 288 in Houston, Texas.
The new toll lanes for SH 288 will cover more than 10 miles from US 59 to Harris County and will include ramps to the Texas Medical Center, an interchange with the Sam Houston Tollway and upgrades to the Loop 610 interchanges. Blueridge Transportation Group will build and then operate the tollway until 2068.
SH 288 stretches for 60 miles to Freeport and is considered “a critical north-south transportation corridor” for Houston.
“The TIFIA loan program is designed to help communities like Houston begin projects like this—a project that they would have otherwise had to wait years to start,” says Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “The new tolls lanes will provide a more reliable commute in one of America’s most congested metro areas, and improve access to jobs and community services in neighborhoods there.”
FHWA says each federal funding dollar has provided up to $14 in TIFIA credit assistance. This in turn, has supported up to $40 in transportation infrastructure investment. The program has financed $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2016 so far.
“Critical infrastructure projects like this one depend on innovative new approaches, and the Lone Star State has been a leader in using such creative solutions,” says FHWA Administrator Gregory Nadeau. “The people of Houston have needed improvements to this corridor for a long time.”