LUFKIN, TX - The three-level diamond interchange construction project, labeled the North Near Term, at U.S. 59 and Loop 287 in Lufkin gets under way Monday, September 10, with a traffic shift on The Loop. The project is designed to allow traffic on U.S. 59, U.S. 69 and Loop 287 to flow freely through the U.S. 59/Loop 287 intersection and will improve vertical clearances at the bridges. It covers an area of U.S. 59 from the Moffett Overpass to just north of FM 3439/Spence Street.
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) says the contractor will move eastbound and westbound Loop traffic over a few feet to accommodate the construction of the new lanes. No re-routes or detours are planned at this time.
According to TxDOT, the contractor will move all four lanes of Loop 287 traffic to the east side of the roadway starting just north of SH 103 east/Atkinson Drive on Monday. Work is slated to begin on the north side of the Moffett Overpass. Barricades are in place and signs will help motorists navigate through the work zone as construction advances.
The Big Picture of Phase I:
* The project includes building a northbound direct connector from Loop 287 to U.S. 59, exiting right off the U.S. 59 NB mainlanes near FM 3521.
* A southbound direct connector will be built from U.S. 59 to Loop 287 merging with the eastbound mainlanes. This bridge will eliminate the need for the existing cloverleaf (circular exit).
* The mainlanes of Loop 287 will be lowered at Business 59 (BU59) and the Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR) overpass.
* A new overpass will be constructed to the west of the existing U.S. 59 / UPRR underpass, and will ultimately replace the underpass.
* The proposed paving materials include asphalt frontage roadways along Loop 287 and concrete mainlanes for The Loop and U.S. 59.
* There will be two interconnected traffic signals at BU59 and The Loop.
* Two new one-way U-turn bridges will allow U-turn movements at the intersections.
* Eight large retaining walls will be built to accommodate new ramps and U-turns around the bridges.
A look at the work planned over the next few months by roadway:
U.S. 59/U.S. 69/Loop 287 Mainlanes:
* Construction begins Monday, September 10, on a portion of the new Loop 287 westbound mainlanes (east side of existing roadway).
* Traffic will be shifted onto the eastbound outside shoulder of Loop 287.
* The center barrier will be removed and replaced with temporary concrete barrier for this lane shift.
* Crews will also be preparing the right-of-row along the north side of Loop 287 within the project limits.
* Night-time work placing drainage structures on U.S. 59 will begin in October.
* Foundation work for the north- and south-bound fly-overs is slated to begin in October.
* Construction will also start Monday, September 10 on a portion of the eastbound and westbound frontage roads from the Moffett Overpass west to BU59.
* The old truck stop parking lot will be removed, crushed and recycled into the base for the frontage roads in the coming weeks.
* Temporary detour pavement will be placed adjacent to the BU59 southbound mainlanes beginning in November to start work on the direct connector bridge abutments.
FM 2021/Davisville Road:
* Construction equipment traffic will be in full swing this month. Use caution when traveling in the work zone.
* Night-time work will begin in October placing and removing drainage structures on FM 2021. Temporary pavement will be placed to accommodate the new tie-in to the frontage road and mainline.
FM 3439/Spence Street:
* Beginning in October, the following are expected to occur.
* Right turns onto southbound U.S. 59 will be discontinued for approximately one year.
* Left turns onto FM 3439/Spence Street will not be allowed for northbound U.S. 59 traffic for two years.
* Northbound left turns from FM 3439 onto U.S. 59 will be permanently closed. FM 3439 traffic is advised to access U.S. 59 from Loop 287 until further notice.
* The U.S. 59 crossover at this intersection will be permanently closed in early November. All traffic wanting to head into Lufkin from FM 3521 is advised to travel south on Davisville Road to Loop 287.