TxDOT plans virtual meeting, will close portion of Center Street for 14 months

staff reports
While the Texas Department of Transportation has many projects scheduled, the main one will include the closure of the east and westbound lanes of Center Street under US 75 in Sherman.

The Texas Department of Transportation issued news releases about planned road projects to take place in the coming weeks. A public meeting will be held in April to discuss Farm-to-Market road 1417 in Sherman and Center Street below US Highway 75 will be closed starting next week for more than one year.

The virtual meeting will be held at 4 p.m. April 22 and the public will be told information about the proposed widening of FM 1417 between OB Groner Road to US 75 in Sherman.

"A pre-recorded audio and video presentation will provide details on the proposed project," the news release said. "After the online presentation, residents can provide comments and input on this proposed roadway. Comments must be received by May 7, 2021 to be part of the official record."

Plans include making the portion of highway into four lances "to facilitate future unfunded expansion to a six-lane roadway."

The release said widening would occur to the inside within grass medians that separate northbound and southbound lanes.

"Although additional right of way would be required, no residential or non-residential structures are anticipated to be displaced at this time," the release said. "Information concerning services and benefits available to affected property owners and information about the tentative schedule for right-of-way acquisition and construction can be obtained from the TxDOT district office by calling (817) 370-3523."

For information about the recorded presentation, visit http://www.txdot.gov and click on Inside TxDOT.  Residents can also copy/paste this link into their browser: https://www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/get-involved/about/hearings-meetings/paris/042221.html

Comments can also be written and mailed to: TxDOT Paris District, 1365 N. Main Street, Paris, TX 75460. Comments may also be sent via email through the online project/meeting site.

Also, TxDOT provided information about the planned closure of the east and westbound lanes of Center Street under US 75 beginning on April 21.

Detours will be put in place to alert drivers.

"East- and westbound lanes of Center Street under US 75 will close at 7 a.m. on April 21, and signed detours will be in place to guide motorists around this intersection," the release said.

"Eastbound Center Street traffic will turn right on the southbound US 75 frontage road, turn left on Park Avenue, and turn left on the northbound US 75 frontage road to return to Center Street."

The release also said, "Westbound traffic on Center Street will turn right on the northbound US 75 frontage road, turn left on Houston Street, and turn left on the southbound US 75 frontage road to return to Center Street."

The is part of the ongoing planned expansion of US 75.

"At 7:30 p.m. on April 26, northbound US 75 mainlane traffic will shift onto the existing frontage road near West Staples Street and transition back to existing mainlanes at West Cherry Street," the release said. "This switch will allow crews to reconstruct the proposed US 75 mainlanes and the bridge over Center Street. Once the traffic switch is completed, US 75 northbound frontage road traffic will be reduced to one travel lane, but two travel lanes will remain for northbound US 75 mainlane traffic. A concrete barrier will separate northbound frontage road and mainlane traffic. This new travel/traffic configuration will remain for approximately 14 months, officials said."

As for all road projects, TxDOT reminded drivers to be aware of changes in the area around planned construction.

"Officials advised motorists to watch for road crews, expect some delays and plan their commutes in advance while this closure and traffic switch are in effect," the release said. "This construction and any necessary temporary lane closures it creates are subject to change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances, officials said.

"Motorists who travel frequently in this area are asked to pay special attention to all barricades, traffic controls and signs, and to reduce their speed as they approach and travel through work zones. They should also avoid distractions such as cell phones, eating, drinking or car audio or navigation systems."