Updates by Britin Bostick (Austin) Transportation Issue Chair
As of 2013, TxDOT maintains 80,268 centerline miles (miles traveled in a one-way direction regardless of the number of lanes in a roadway).
State-maintained centerline miles:
Interstate highways 3,272 Interstate highways 12,062 State highways, Spurs, Loops, Business Rtes 16,411 Farm or Ranch to Market roads and Spurs 40,932 Pass, Park and Recreation Roads 345 Frontage roads 7,245
The total number of lane miles (miles per lane of roadway) in Texas is 195,022.
TxDOT maintains 615 picnic areas (areas that include picnic tables), and 92 rest areas including Travel Information Centers (areas that include restroom facilities and picnic tables).
While only 25.6 percent of roadways in Texas are state-maintained, 73.8 percent of all VMT occurs on state-maintained highways.
Average Annual VMT
VMT on state-maintained highways 175.3B VMT all state roadways 237.3B
Average Daily VMT
VMT on state-maintained highways 480M VMT all state roadways 649.8M
(retrieved from Texas Department of Transportation)
The League of Women Voters of Texas support a transportation system to move people and goods that includes a variety of transportation modes, with emphasis on increased transportation services and other viable alternatives; that is efficient, convenient, and cost effective; that services all segments of the population and diverse geographic needs; that minimizes the harmful effects on the environment, is integrated with land use, and is supported by extensive public education.
Planning for transportation projects should be accomplished by:
Focus: The impact of public transportation on air quality, land use, and social indicators. The need for regional public transportation networks.
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2007: The LWV-TX opposed HB1892 (Smith) a moratorium bill on Trans-Texas Corridor (includes many other toll roads). Highways 1604 and 281 were not included in this moratorium. Some north Texas roads which had been approved were not in the moratorium. The bill passed by the legislature was vetoed by the governor.
2013: During the last legislative session, transportation bills were followed but few were passed. The major legislation involved a proposed constitutional amendment to allow funds from the Rainy Day Fund to be utilized for infrastructure repair and expansion. The amendment legislation passed but did not appear on the same ballot as the water amendment in November 2013. The Texas Department of Transportation was challenged to utilize funds in as efficient way as possible, which resulted in gravel on some rural roads instead of paving. Effects on roads from oil/gas drilling trucks were a concern. There has been much uproar since then and projects have been redirected. Both House and Senate committees were concerned with congestion + e.g., on I35 W and I35 E + but with limited funds could come up with no funding solution.
Transportation will be a high priority in the coming legislature. High speed rail from Houston to the D/FW metroplex, plus the Mexico to Oklahoma City corridor rail, are being addressed by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). Interim charges include: passenger and freight rail are to be evaluated through a review of the Rail Division of TxDOT, and the port system will be evaluated through a review of the Maritime Division of TxDOT. There was a constitutional amendment on funding that will be on the ballot in November 2014 for use for road infrastructure and improvement. Our current positions enable us to address the proposed legislation in a favorable fashion.