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Plans for Underground Houston Freeways Causes Worry Over Flooding Danger

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The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) recently unveiled plans for a massive overhaul of freeway improvements. Some plans for Houston included sending the freeways along the downtown corridor underground. You can imagine that with the threat of Hurricanes each year and flooding issues becoming more common, this raised concerns among Houstonians.

In a recent article by abc13.com, they stated…”Starting in 2020, TxDOT is not only planning to untangle the downtown freeway system by merging US-59 and I-45, it’s also sending some spans of freeway underground in three locations.”

Video: KHOU 11

A YouTube video by KHOU breaks down the plans for each section, showing where the updates will take place and the improvements for green space being proposed as well.

According to plans, between Main and San Jacinto, US 59 would dive underground at midtown and then again at the heart of downtown right by Minute Maid Park. Furthermore, freeways would go below ground level as well from just south of North Main to Cottage Street, shared abc13.com.

Houston skyline

Photo: Pixabay.com

These newly proposed plans do not sit well with some citizens, leaving them wondering what will happen to these underground freeways during floods that occur in what seems to be a yearly basis nowadays. In a statement to ABC 13, TxDOT representative Danny Perez had this to share: “With future projects, we’re also incorporating not just the 500-year type event but also events such as Harvey and the Tax Day Flood and the Memorial Day Flood.”

Not sure how this will work? Check out Woodall Rogers Freeway in downtown Dallas that already has this setup. Pressed with more questions from ABC 13, TxDOT also shared that they plan to “add more retention ponds and pumps for any portion of freeway that goes underground.”

We’re not sure what it would take to improve traffic nightmares around town, but Houston, like many other cities, needs to do something to improve its commutes. Do you hate sitting in traffic? Where are the worst places around Texas you consider traffic nightmares?