As the Rayford Road widening project nears completion, Commissioner James Noack is happy to announce that all lanes, including the UPRR Bridge, are now open from Richards Road to the Grand Parkway.
The improvements made within the project limits are:
- Widened Rayford Road from four to six lanes
- Building a six-lane bridge to bypass the Union Pacific Railroad, this will especially assist first responders during emergencies.
- Building a raised median to enhance safety of left turning motorists
- Improved drainage. 6.22 miles of new drainage infrastructure
- Installed new traffic signals and street signage as well as improved the synchronization of the traffic signals
Through the Montgomery South County Mobility Study sponsored by TxDOT, the Houston-Galveston Area Council, Montgomery County and other partners, Rayford Road was identified as a corridor in need of safety and mobility improvements.
Montgomery County developed a bond to address Rayford Road among other needed road projects. In November 2015, the Montgomery County Bond overwhelmingly passed with Rayford Road listed as the top project for Precinct 3.
Commissioner James Noack recognizes the importance of addressing congestion and needed safety improvements on the east side of I-45, which is why nearly $55 million was spent on the Rayford Road project. Roughly $29 million of the $55 million can be attributed to the contractor and the rest of the cost is shared between the design engineer, property acquisition, project inspection and materials testing. Over 70 percent of the $84 million in road bond funds received by Precinct 3 were spent on road improvement projects on the east side of I-45.
The $55 million project final cost estimate is about $5 million under the original projected budget allowing $5 million to be reallocated to other mobility projects on the east side of I-45. Despite the 287 days with recorded rainfall and over 198.17 inches of total rainfall since the project started in 2017, the contractor was able to get all lanes open with 2 contract days still remaining.
Intermittent lane closures will still occur in the coming weeks as the contractor works to clean up the entire project, remove old signage, hydroseed and perform minor road repairs.