Sherman is planning to spend more than $83,000 on a little over five acres of right of way land that will be used as part of the planned extension of West Travis Street.


The Sherman City Council recently approved a resolution accepting the conveyance document from Panda Sherman Power LLC for the 5.2933 acres of land that will be part of phase three of the city’s West Travis Street project. Sherman has agreed to pay $58,226 for the land and relocate an existing barbed-wire fence at an estimated cost of $25,000. The extension of Travis Street on the west side of U.S. Highway 75 currently goes through the Sherman Crossroads development and will ultimately be a four-lane, divided roadway that will connect with OB Groner Road at its intersection with FM 1417.


“This is a tract of land that we need to do phase three of West Travis Street,” City Manager Robby Hefton said of the land to be purchased. “It’s the section just east of Moore (Street), just east of the (new) high school site. We got an appraisal on this. They’ve agreed to a sales price of about $58,000, and also in the process we’ve got to replace a fence that will need to be moved back.”


A document created for the council states the existing five-strand barbed-wire fence along Panda Sherman Power’s property will be relocated before construction begins.


“That’s a long stretch of fence, so we’re committing to do that as well,” Hefton said of the work that is estimated to cost approximately $25,000. “So the purchase price is $58,000, plus we’ll replace the fence.”


The acquisition was approved unanimously, though council member Willie Steele was absent from the meeting.


Last month, Sherman moved ahead with plans for $3 million in construction on phase four of the West Travis Street project. That section will be in front of the new Sherman High School site being built on the city’s west side. The council gave city staff permission to advertise for a construction company to take on the work along the existing O.B. Groner Road between Moore Street and FM 1417. Construction on that section of the West Travis Street extension is expected to begin later this year.


Director of Engineering Clint Philpott explained Sherman skipped over phases two and three in order to get a head start on the area where Sherman Independent School District is starting its construction. Sherman ISD Assistant Superintendent Tyson Bennett said the first phase of work on the school has already begun at the site — on the northwest corner of O.B. Groner Road and West Moore Street — and the next phase will see the addition of utilities and paving in October and November. Then the third phase of the school’s construction will be the building phase in January.


Work on West Travis Street first began in April 2016 when Dallas engineering firm Brockette/Davis/Drake Inc. was awarded the contract to do the engineering design for the four-lane thoroughfare. Work on the first portion of the roadway began later that year and was completed early in 2017 when it was subsequently opened for use to help facilitate other construction in the Sherman Crossroads development.


“Overall our goal for that entire stretch — from (FM) 1417 eastward all the way to the (Hwy.) 75 southbound service road — we expect to be done and completed and the road open by spring of 2020, which will be a few months in advance of the school district’s plans to have the school opened by fall of 2020,” Hefton said in May.


Bennett said last month that construction is expected to be completed on the high school in the summer of 2020.