According to ACT-TEST-CENTERS.COM, Interstate 69 or I -69 is an Interstate Highway in the US state of Texas. Most of the highway is still in the planning phase, and will run north-south through the east and south of the state. The planned length is more than 800 kilometers. Several sections have already been completed as freeway, particularly in the Houston area.
In the Victoria area, I-69E and I-69W should converge, after which the actual I-69 begins. The highway will mainly follow the existing US 59 corridor from Victoria to Houston, passing through the flat Coastal Bend, but at some distance from the Gulf of Mexico.
According to liuxers.com, in the Houston area, I-69 runs on the Southwest Freeway and the Eastex Freeway, through Downtown Houston. These are very busy highways, the Southwest Freeway has 2×4 to 2×6 lanes plus an alternate lane that has its own connections in the median strip. On the south side of Downtown Houston is a 16-lane parallel structure. I-69 runs on overpasses along the east side of downtown with 2×4 lanes and intersects with Interstate 10 and Interstate 45. North of downtown, I-69 is formed by the modern Eastex Freeway, which has 2×5 lanes with a reversible lane. North of the Houston airport, I-69 has 2×4 lanes, eventually narrowing to 2×2 lanes.
In East Texas, I-69 also follows the corridor of US 59, via Cleveland, Livingston, Lufkin and Nacogdoches to Tenaha. At Tenaha, I-369 must connect. In East Texas, I-69 runs mostly through wooded areas. After Tenaha, the border with the state of Louisiana follows, after which Interstate 69 in Louisiana runs towards Shreveport.
Various routes have been developed as freeways since the 1950s with a US Highway number. On December 5, 2011, the first section of the highway was signposted as I-69, a 10-mile stretch between I-37 and SH 44, west of Corpus Christi near Robstown. This was previously US 77. In September 2012, the first signposts with I-69 were installed along the Eastex Freeway in Houston. On February 28, 2013, I-69 was approved for the Southwest Freeway in Houston west of I-610. Since March 26, 2015, I-69 has also been assigned to US 59 within I-610 in Houston. With this, the entire 120-kilometer route through the Houston area is numbered as Interstate 69.
On August 31, 2018, the frontage roads on the southern part of the El Campo bypass were completed, effectively upgrading this part to a freeway. Between early 2016 and April 2019, 21 miles of US 59 southwest of Rosenberg in Fort Bend County was converted to 2×3 lane Interstate 69. The project cost $100 million.
The conversion of US 59 to I-69 between Kendleton and Rosenberg southwest of Houston was completed in 2019 and the reconstruction of the Rosenberg bypass will follow in 2021. In 2021, the newly reconfigured portion in western Fort Bend County will be further widened to 2×3 lanes between Kendleton and Rosenberg. With this, the entire portion of I-69 in Fort Bend County had a minimum of 2×3 lanes, even though the portion southwest of Rosenberg was not yet suburbanized at the time.
|Harlingen bypass||5 km||circa 1963|
|Harlingen||Sebastian||17 km||circa 1980s|
|Northwest Boulevard||I-37||1 km||circa 1982|
|Robstown Bypass||4 km||circa 1998|
|Robstown||Northwest Boulevard||4 km||2006|
Corpus Christi – Houston
|Edna (west)||Edna (east)||6 km||< 1984|
|El Campo (west)||El Campo (South)||5 km||31-08-2018|
Southwest Freeway, Houston
|I-10||Runnells Street||1.1 km||11-04-1958|
|Alabama Street (Spur 527)||Kirby Drive||4.0 km||26-07-1961|
|Main Street||Dairy Ashford Road||1.1 km||00-00-1962|
|Kirby Drive||West Park Drive||7.6 km||24-07-1962|
|West Park Drive||Fondren Road||3.5 km||09-04-1965|
|Runnells Street||I-45||2.0 km||00-04-1966|
|Fondren Road||Bissonnet Street||3.6 km||00-09-1969|
|Dairy Ashford Road||State Highway 6||3.3 km||00-00-1973|
|Bissonnet Street||Wilcrest Drive||3.8 km||00-08-1974|
|I-45||Spur 527||3.2 km||27-09-1974|
|Wilcrest Drive||Main Street||3.5 km||00-00-1975|
|State Highway 6||Rosenberg||24.5 km||00-00-1983|
Eastex Freeway, Houston
|Collingsworth Street||Bennington Street||3 km||22-12-1953|
|Bennington Street||Laura Koppe Road||2 km||00-02-1955|
|I-10||Collingsworth Street||3 km||00-12-1955|
|Laura Koppe Road||Little York Road||3 km||00-00-1956|
|Little York Road||Mount Houston Road||3 km||00-00-1959|
|Mount Houston Road||Aldine Bender Road||5 km||00-00-1960|
|Greens Road||Humble||6 km||00-00-1969|
|Aldine Bender Road||Greens Road||3 km||00-00-1970|
Houston – Carthage
- reserved (future)
The Eastex Freeway at Beltway 8 in Houston.
Already 370 kilometers of the planned 800 kilometers in Texas has already been developed as an Interstate Highway. This concerns the following routes;
- US 59 in the wider Houston area
- US 77 in the Harlingen – Brownsville region
Most other parts of the planned route via US 59 and US 77 are already 2×2 lanes, but do not yet have an Interstate Highway standard. The most concrete part for a renumbering to I-69 is US 59 in the Houston area, in July 2012 a double numbering of I-69 and US 59 was approved by the Houston area.
The next major project to build I-69 concerns the conversion of US 77 between Corpus Christi and Harlingen in the deep south of Texas. In July 2012, the EIS was approved by the FHWA. A bypass is planned at Riviera, with an estimated cost of $128 million in 2022.
Corpus Christi – Victoria
The most costly project between Corpus Christi and Victoria is a bypass of Refugio. The cost of this is estimated at $474 million in 2022.
Victoria – Houston
In the short term, the northern part of the El Campo bypass in Wharton County will also be equipped with frontage roads, so that the main carriageways can become an Interstate Highway. This should start in mid-2019. A larger project is the reconstruction of the entire route in Wharton County. An environmental assessment was published for this in December 2016. In Wharton County, US 59 is being upgraded to a 2×2 lane freeway and frontage roadswith 2 lanes each. This work started in 2020 and may be completed by mid-2023. In June 2017, the environmental ordinance for the reconstruction of US 59 between El Campo and the Jackson County border was issued. This reconstruction is about 19 kilometers long.
In August 2019, a FONSI was established for 11 kilometers of I-69 between Cleveland and Shepherd. A bypass around Corrigan is planned further north of Houston. The final environmental decision for the Corrigan bypass was adopted on 23 January 2018, followed by a FONSI on 9 April 2018.
In 2015, a grade-separated connection was realized at Redland north of Lufkin. Procedures were carried out in 2017-2018 for the upgrade of the section between Lufkin and Redland.
I-69 will soon be built on the south side of Nacogdoches in East Texas. Also, a 6-kilometer section of 2×2 US 59 south of Cleveland, just outside the Houston area, will be widened to 2×3 lanes of frontage roads, becoming part of I-69. A FONSI was established for this project in May 2018. Proceedings have also been initiated for the Cleveland to Shepherd route. Cleveland and Shepherd upgrade may begin in early 2023.
The plan is to number I-69 in South Texas as three branches;
- I-69E: Robstown – Harlingen – Brownsville (US 77)
- I-69C: Mathis-Pharr (US 281)
- I-69W: George West – Laredo (US 59)
On July 15, 2013, the first signposts with I-69E were unveiled in Harlingen. On February 21, 2014, Loop 20 around Laredo was designated Future I-69.
The number I-69C is the first Interstate number with the designation “central”. The I-69 branch to Laredo will likely be designated as the primary route of I-69, not I-69W.