TxDOT tries to back away from non-toll plans on 281, 1604

Though is a HUGE victory to wrestle away 10 miles of toll lanes, carefully notice the word choice here. DFW officials were also promised a non-toll expansion of lanes next to the planned toll lanes on I-35E only to have TxDOT pull the rug out from under them. TxDOT later told them there wasn't enough money to do the non-toll expansion as promised so they'd be building the toll lanes first (the non-toll lanes would come later when, presumably, the funds dropped out of the sky). More background here. San Antonians beware!

Considering the Alamo RMA just got rejected for a federal bailout (known as a TIFIA loan), how do they anticipate securing enough funding to do either 281 or 1604 as a toll road anyway?

Funding identified for Loop 1604, U.S. 281

By Vianna Davila

Updated 12:03 a.m., Saturday, May 5, 2012

Transportation officials have nailed down a plan to pay for expressways on sections of U.S. 281 and Loop 1604 without tolls, but with a couple of twists.

The Loop 1604 portion would be just under seven miles, rather than the 12.5 miles originally planned. And toll lanes will likely one day run alongside the free ones on both highways, but drivers would have a choice of which lanes to use.

That's a marked change from previous toll plans in which the entire expressway would have been tolled.

It's unclear whether the toll lanes would be built at the same time as the free lanes and whether they would be elevated, though that is a possibility, said Leroy Alloway, director of community development for the Alamo Regional Mobility Authority, the county's tolling agency.

The plan, presented Friday to a committee of city, county and transportation officials tasked with solving the funding puzzle, includes cost estimates for the projects, a mixture of funding sources that would be used to pay for them, and a proposal for how nontolled and tolled lanes might co-exist along the corridors.

The San Antonio Bexar County Metropolitan Planning Organization board will discuss the plan May 21 and vote at its meeting in June.

Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local_news/article/Funding-plan-for-Loop-1604-and-U-S-281-identified-3536328.php#ixzz1uFHjBLKR