by MADLIN MEKELBURG
SAN ANTONIO — Efforts to expand the stretch of U.S. 281 passing through San Antonio will move ahead without the addition of toll lanes following a unanimous Texas Transportation Commission vote Thursday.
The initial plan for the highway expansion called for adding several toll lanes to the toll-free highway, prompting pushback from local officials who requested $268 million of state funds be moved to the project to eliminate toll designations.
Funding for the first portion of the project is complete with $228 million of federal, state and local funds going towards the expansion, according to a Texas Department of Transportation press release. The $304 million needed for the remainder of the project will come from the Alamo Regional Mobility Authority through Proposition 7, but has to be approved by voters first.
“Working with local partners not only in San Antonio, but all over the state is key in helping the Transportation Commission make sound transportation policy,” said Texas Transportation Commissioner J. Bruce Bugg, in a statement. “I could not be more pleased that we’re helping the local community plan much-needed congestion relief on U.S. 281 and doing so without additional burden to drivers in the area.”
MADLIN MEKELBURG reports for The Texas Tribune where this story was originally published. It is made available here through a news partnership between the Texas Tribune and the San Marcos Mercury.
COVER PHOTO by JIM NIX. SAN MARCOS MERCURY GRAPHIC by BRAD ROLLINS.