Closures on Hardy Toll Road expected for widening project

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With the growing population in Houston, the Harris County Toll Road Authority decided it was time to expand the Hardy Toll Road. (KTRK)

With the growing population in Houston, the Harris County Toll Road Authority decided it was time to expand the Hardy Toll Road.

"The Hardy Toll Road is almost 30 years old, so we're making a complete overhaul, a facelift, and make it better for commuters," explains Mary Benton, the Media Relations Manager with the Harris County Toll Road Authority.

The $170 million project will be broken up into nine segments. One part of the project will include widening the highway from four lanes to six lanes from 1960 to the grand parkway.

At the Grand Parkway, they're building direct connectors to improve traffic flow.

Also, expect construction on eight bridges along the Hardy Toll Road.

"We're also improving the lighting, the signing and striping, basically doing some maintenance improvements to turn into converting the facility itself by December of 2016," adds Quinton Alberto who is one of the engineers on the project.

One of the biggest changes on the Hardy Toll Road, though, will be the removal of cash-tolling.
"It's going to become all electronic, and you're going to need your EZ Tag to drive on the road beginning next summer or towards the end of the year," says Benton.

The Harris County Toll Road Authority realizes that not all commuters have a credit card or bank account, so they've come up with an alternative.

" HCTRA is working on an electronic tolling tag at retailers so you can walk into a pharmacy or grocery store and pick up a card similar to a gift card....By the end of the year, we plan to have those in stores. It's a retail tag," says Benton.

Most construction will take place between 10pm and 5am on weeknights, and from 10 pm Friday to 5am Monday on weekends. This weekend's closure on the Hardy Toll Road will be southbound between I-45 and 1960.

The entire project has an aggressive timeline, and they hope to be finished with construction in two years.
Related Topics:
trafficconstructionroad repairtoll roadHouston
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