Majority of $743m US 183 South tolled expressway in Texas opens

WCN Editorial Team 10 Nov 2020 NORTH AMERICA TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE

A majority of the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority’s (Mobility Authority) new US 183 South tolled expressway in Travis County, Texas, the US, has opened.

Once the $743m project is substantially complete, the expressway will act as a primary route to and from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport and points beyond.

The US 183 S expressway will consist of 37 new bridges, direct connect flyover ramps, five grade-separated interchanges, multimodal transportation options for pedestrian and bicyclist facilities, intelligent traffic management systems, and landscaping enhancements.

As of 24 October 2020, 95% of US 183 South, right from US 290 to SH 71, opened to public traffic.

This is claimed to be a major milestone for the Mobility Authority and Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) following almost decade of working with agencies and the community to provide a solution to boost mobility in eastern Travis County.

To achieve this milestone, Colorado River Constructors (CRC) joint venture team, to which Balfour Beatty is also a part of, executed at least 26 building phases and 82 design changes to link several roadways to the US 183 South corridor.

The joining roadways and entities included around 35 cross streets, five major intersections, two major interstates and highways and one railway.

Two additional bridge spans and arched culverts were designed and built on US 183 South.

Situated at the westbound overpass bridge of SH 71, the bridge system comprises 42 precast arches with each arch weighing 62,000 pounds, 12.5 ft high and around 45ft out to out.

The joint venture team also paved over than 100 lane miles of concrete along the tolled expressway.

Balfour Beatty’s US civils operations CEO and president John Rempe PE said: “This milestone is a true testament of our project team’s many accomplishments to successfully open the US 183 South tolled expressway on behalf of the Mobility Authority.

“Throughout the project’s delivery, our team and partners remained abundantly cautious of the project’s cost and schedule, surpassed 2.5 million manhours without a lost time incident and upheld the client’s and community’s goal of sustainability and environmental preservation along the corridor.

“We commend our teams hard work and dedication to reconstruct the new expressway and we thank the public for working with us to safely deliver a new solution that will improve mobility on one of the most congested roadways in the State of Texas.”

First phase of the US 183 South corridor project opened in Fall 2019. This phase included the delivery of US 183 from US 290 to Techni Center Drive.

The final phase, between the southern half of the corridor from Techni Center to SH 71, is expected to achieve substantial completion in the first quarter of 2021. It will see the opening of the remaining toll lanes and general-purpose lanes.

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Aerial view north of SH 71 - Oct. 2020. (Credit: The Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority)

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