The Wonder World Drive extension, which will officially open Saturday, is bordered by 500 acres of dedicated city park land. City of San Marcos photo.
The largest transportation project in the San Marcos history will officially open Saturday, when public officials will preside over a dedication and opening ceremony for the $26.38 million Wonder World Drive extension.
City, state, federal and county officials will participate in the celebration, to which the public is invited. San Marcos Mayor Susan Narvaiz will preside at 10 a.m. at the east end of the new parkway at Hunter Road.
The parkway extends Wonder World Drive from Interstate-35 on the east across the south end of San Marcos to RR 12, the main highway going west towards Wimberley. Narvaiz said the road will reroute heavy truck traffic away from the city’s downtown and historic neighborhoods.
“The dedication of this significant roadway brings to fruition 20 years of committed efforts by our citizens, city council, staff and the Texas Department of Transportation,” Narvaiz said.
San Marcos voters approved the Wonder World Drive extension in a 1998 bond election. U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison influenced the U.S. Congress to allocate $10 million in 2005 for right-of-way acquisition, studies, permits and engineering. The City of San Marcos financed the 3.2-mile extension via a pass-through agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT).
The pass-through agreement provides that TxDOT will reimburse the City from $3 million to $6 million per year for 10-20 years based on traffic volume. Permanent traffic counters will record traffic volumes on the roadway between Hunter Road and RR 12. The city will receive its first payment in August 2011.
The dedication festivities will begin at 7 a.m. with the Run2Purgatory, a 5K fun run and walk that is open to the public and free of charge. All race participants will receive free commemorative t-shirts. Runners can register at the starting line located on the east end of the Wonder World Drive extension at Hunter Road.
Ribbon cutting ceremonies will begin at 10 a.m. and include autos from Dick’s Classic Car Museum, introduction of dignitaries and the dedication.
The festivities will include live music, a remote control car race, a barbecue lunch prepared by city fire and police personnel, and guided tours of the new parkway and the Purgatory Creek Preserve hike and bike trail.
The Wonder World Drive extension is bordered by more than 500 acres of dedicated city park land.
Parking for the day’s events will be at the east end of the Wonder World Drive extension at Hunter Road. Police officers will be on hand to direct traffic. Handicap and VIP parking will be available. Overflow parking will be located at Hernandez Intermediate School, 333 Stagecoach Trail.
After the festivities, construction crews will remove barricades and prepare for the 6 p.m. opening of the roadway from Hunter Road to Ranch Road 12. The Craddock Avenue extension will remain under construction with an anticipated fall completion date.
The project was designed by KBR of Austin and is being built by J.C. Evans Construction of Leander under the direction of Interim City Manager Laurie Moyer, Director of Capital Improvements David Healey and Assistant Director of Public Services Sabas Avila.Email | Print