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Monday, October 31

Be safe on All Hallow's Eve


If you've not already seen or heard one, let this be your regular reminder of the importance of staying safe during Halloween.

Those with kids are busily worrying about the candy that gets generously placed in their kids' loot bags. Those without kids are ensuring they've got a sober ride home from their parties (or they had better be).


One aspect that's often overlooked is that of pedestrian safety. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration published a report in 2008 identifying Halloween as the second-most dangerous night of the year for pedestrians (behind only New Years Eve). We have no indication this has changed in the last eight years.

There are many reasons, though we won't go through lengths to describe each of them. We simply want everyone not pulling door duty this evening to be extremely aware of some factors likely contributing to our issue - particularly when our city already sees an alarmingly high number of pedestrian collisions. At any rate, remember this:

  • Not all costumes are easily visible. Not many Batman costumes come with strobe lights for safety, and even those little Kylo Rens or Reys running around may lack enough light from their light sabers to make them noticeable from a car. Some neighborhoods are dark, the result of homeowners associations preferring to avoid light pollution in private yards. As a driver, staying extra alert and driving just a little slower may help a ton and allow our trick-or-treaters to enjoy their spoils.
  • Some costumes are hard to see out of. They've gotten better over the years, but Halloween masks are still tough for little kids to see out of. This means they may not see you when they look both ways to cross the street and inadvertently step out in front of you.
  • There are simply more people out on Halloween than on other nights. This means more opportunity for an issue to arise, and it requires more attention from drivers to keep from running into - literally - a problem.
Whatever the cause, we know there's a higher occurrence of pedestrian-motor vehicle crashes on Halloween. Please, please do what you can to make sure you don't become another statistic or news story. Make sure Halloween stays safe for you and for those around you!

By the way ... safety tonight isn't only the responsibility of the drivers ... if you're out and about, it's on you, too!

Friday, October 28

Next week's construction-related closures

I-10 – East San Antonio
  • Monday, October 31-Friday, November 18. 7 p.m. until 7 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Foster Road and Martinez Creek. Alternating lanes will close while crews set barrier. 
I-10 – East San Antonio

  • Monday-Friday, October 31-November 4. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Main lanes, both directions, between I-35 and I-410. The right lane will close while crews work on guardrail.

    I-35 – New Braunfels
    • Sunday-Monday, October 30-31. 10 p.m. until 6 a.m. Southbound main lanes between the Comal-Hays county line and FM 306. Alternating lanes will close while crews lay asphalt. 
    • Monday-Friday, October 31-November 4. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Southbound main lanes between the Comal-Hays county line and FM 306. Alternating lanes will close while crews lay asphalt. 
    • Friday, November 4. 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Southbound main lanes at York Creek. The left lane will close while crews pour concrete. 
    I-35 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Northbound exit to westbound I-410. Alternating lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will exit Walzem and continue along the frontage road to reach I-410. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    • Monday-Friday, October 31-November 4. 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. daily. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    I-410 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Eastbound exit ramp to Randolph Boulevard and the city of Windcrest. The ramp will close while crews do bridge work. Traffic will exit Thousand Oaks, turn around and return to Randolph Boulevard to reach its destination. 
    I-410 – East San Antonio
    • Current through Friday, December 2. Southbound main lanes over North WW White. The right lane will close while crews repair damaged bridge rail. 
    I-410 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Friday-Saturday, October 28-29. 9 p.m. until 11 a.m. Southbound main lanes between Military Drive and Hwy 151. The left two lanes will close while crews work on bridge support columns. 
    • Sunday-Monday, October 30-31. 9 p.m. until 2 a.m. Northbound main lanes between Hwy 151 and Military Drive. Alternating lanes will close while crews move equipment. 
    US Hwy 281 – Central San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Main lanes, both directions, between I-35 and I-410. Alternating lanes will close while crews work on guardrail. This closure includes ramps as needed. Traffic will follow the posted detour route. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Airport and Josephine. Alternating lanes will close while crews do bridge work. This closure includes ramps as needed. Traffic will follow the posted detour route. 
    Loop 1604 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Friday-Saturday, October 28-30. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. daily. Southbound frontage road at Alamo Ranch Parkway. All lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will turn right onto Alamo Ranch Parkway, turn around and re-enter the frontage road to reach its destination. 
    • Friday-Monday, October 28-31. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound frontage road at Alamo Ranch Parkway. All lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will turn right onto Alamo Ranch Parkway, turn around and re-enter the frontage road to reach its destination. 
    • Saturday-Sunday, October 29-30. 11:55 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound frontage road between Culebra Road and Alamo Ranch Parkway. All lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work at Alamo Ranch Parkway. Traffic will use Westwood Loop to reach its destination. This closure includes the southbound exit to Alamo Ranch Parkway. Exiting traffic will use the Culebra Road exit. 
    • Monday, October 31. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Southbound exit ramp to Alamo Ranch Parkway. The ramp will close while crews work on guardrail. Traffic will exit Culebra Road and pass through the intersection to reach its destination. 
    • Tuesday, November 1. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Southbound main lanes at Culebra Road. The right lane will close while crews work on guardrail. 
    Hwy 151 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Friday-Thursday, October 28-November 3. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Frontage road, both directions, between Wiseman Boulevard and Culebra Road. Alternating lanes will close while crews resurface the road. 
    • Monday-Thursday, October 31-November 3. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. Westbound frontage road between Wiseman Boulevard and Loop 1604. The frontage road/ramp will close while crews do road work. Traffic will go east on Hwy 151 to Westover Hills and turn around to reach Loop 1604 and Culebra Road. This closure includes one lane of the Hwy 151 lanes as they reach the Loop 1604 connector. 
    • Current until Sunday, October 30. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Westbound main lanes between I-410 and Westover Hills Boulevard. The right lane will close while crews do survey work. This closure will include ramps. Traffic will follow the posted detour route. 
    • Current until December 2016. Westbound exit ramp to Ingram and Potranco roads. The ramp will remain closed while crews install bridge support structures for the direct connector ramps being constructed. 
    Other roads – Seguin
    • Friday, October 28 at 8 p.m. until Sunday, October 30 at 6 p.m. Intersection of King and Cedar streets. The intersection will be closed to all through traffic while crews rebuild the intersection. Traffic will follow the posted detour route. 
    • Current until Saturday, December 31. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. King Street, both directions, between Cedar Street and US 90. All lanes will close while crews install storm drains and rebuild the road. Traffic will use Hwy 123 as a detour. 
    Other roads – Boerne
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Scenic Loop Road, both directions, at I-10. Traffic will be reduced to one-way, controlled by off-duty officers while crews do roadwork. 
    Other roads – Southeast Bexar County
    • Sunday-Friday, October 30-November 4. 7 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Northbound WW White between the intersection of WW White and SE Military and I-10. The right lane will close while crews resurface the road. 
    Other roads – Northwest San Antonio
    • Tuesday-Friday, November 1-4. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Military Drive, both directions, at I-410. All lanes will close while crews set bridge support beams overhead. Traffic will use the frontage roads and turnarounds to reach its destination. 
    All closures are pending weather.

    Wednesday, October 26

    Public meeting upcoming: Bandera Rd at Lp 1604

    One of the trickier things we get to do is find a solution to intersections that are simply overloaded with traffic. One of those intersections is Bandera Road at Loop 1604.

    Well, we've got a plan for this intersection. Honestly, the plan is a bit tough to describe here on a blog (it's called a displaced left turn) so we hope you'll come out to see what we're hoping to do during an open house presentation Thursday night. Here are the details:

    • Thursday, Oct. 27, between 6 and 8 p.m. (come as you're able; we won't have a formal presentation but will have tables set up with engineers available for questions).
    • O'Connor High School cafeteria ... that's at 12221 Leslie Road in Helotes.
    • Discussion of proposed plans to address congestion issues on Bandera Road at Lp 1604; please let us know what you think. Your input can impact what will actually happen there.
    In the meantime, take a look at this video showing a similar intersection improvement on I-35 in San Marcos ... then come to the meeting ready to ask questions!

    Tuesday, October 25

    Mail Bag: A month-plus worth of questions

    Does TxDOT evaluate drainage conditions on major roads after a major rain?
    The left lane of the southbound 281 access road between Bitters and Wurzbach Parkway was under water Monday morning (9/26). The on-ramp to 281 was also under water with a stalled car on the ramp. Since there was not a flood gauge on the side of the road, it was hard to know how much water was on the on-ramp.
    - Tom

    We do take a look for problem areas and find ways to address these areas as needed after our major flood events. At your location we don't have a posted flood gauge because it's not the location of a creek bed. Per our Manual for Uniform Traffic Control Devices:
    "If used, the Depth Gauge sign shall be in addition to the ROAD MAY FLOOD, WATER CROSSING, or WHEN FLOODED TURN AROUND DON'T DROWN sign and shall indicate the depth of the water at the deepest point on the roadway." (Section 2C.35.03)
    That same section tells us not to post a "water crossing" sign where water only occasionally or temporarily crosses due to flash floods, like this instance. The "road may flood" sign is for areas with frequent flooding issues. This little section of the southbound frontage road of US 281 does not qualify for one of these signs.

    Do you know when will they begin to finish the clover on 1604 and 281? What is the projected duration of the project? Will they be expanding 281 from 1604 to Overlook Parkway and be adding bridges across the highway - for example, at Evans Road? Thanks.
    - Sal
    Are you talking about the other direct connectors at the intersection of Lp 1604 and US 281? Those are part of a project expanding US 281 to include overpasses and frontage roads through Stone Oak Parkway. That project is set to begin spring 2017 and will take more than three years to complete. Continuing the expressway from Stone Oak Parkway through the Comal County line is targeted for the winter of 2018-2019.

    Can VIA provide new or modified bus route(s) to relieve traffic congestion in the Alamo Ranch area (e.g, Wiseman west of 1604, Alamo Ranch Parkway, Culebra & FM 1560, etc.)?
    - Richard
    This would be a fantastic question to pose to VIA; we can't speak on their behalf.

    Regarding the "zipper merge", does the "merge at the last minute" rule apply to lanes which are used for entrance and exit ramps such as the ones on Loop 1604 between I-10 and Blanco Rd? Would it be possible to post "zipper merge" signs at several needed places in San Antonio?
    -Tom
    To be honest, we're still fleshing out the best places for us to use the late merge or "zipper" as well as signing policies. One place you should always use it is when you're approaching a construction zone or a crash scene that's got lanes closed off. Remember - this really only applies during heavy traffic. If traffic is free flowing and not all that congested, merge as soon as you feel comfortable.
    As for what to do at those ramp merge points, a good rule of thumb is to not cross a solid line. Wait for the broken line. That's supposed to show drivers where merging is to be done, but not everyone has gotten that memo.

    Hi, I think someone wrote up the construction notices incorrectly this week. Your notice said "Current through Wednesday, October 19. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, at Hwy 151. Alternating lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will use the frontage roads to reach its destination."
    1604 was closed off in the middle of the day all day Saturday, causing backups and gridlock. What happened here?
    - Rick
    Rick, you're absolutely correct. We completely missed the note regarding that closure and dropped the ball. We depend on contractors sending in closure alerts weekly by Thursday night in order to allow our communication staff time to get everything compiled into a weekly report. Sometimes a contractor misses this Thursday deadline, and we're working on getting accountability written into our contracts to prevent this. We're also working to ensure accountability exists when no notice is given.
    In this case, it was an oversight - one that won't soon be repeated.

    How far towards Canyon Lake is the FM 306 expansion project going to go?
    All the way thru to Hgy 281?
    - LD
    The current work we have going runs from about Hunter Road and ends at River Chase. We have another project at the intersection of Bravo, near Canyon Lake, but that's constructing a left-turn lane at that location and won't expand the road beyond that.

    What is the purpose of the new overpass at I-10 and Leon Spring Road?
    - Jim
    Jim, we're assuming you're talking about the work at Old Fredericksburg Road. If we're wrong, let us know.
    We do get asked about the purpose from time to time, and some folks assume it's a widening project that will add capacity to the I-10 main lanes. It's not. All we're doing is adding this new overpass at Old Fred and converting the frontage roads to one-way.
    The frontage road conversion is the key here; it's about safety, really. We're hoping to eliminate the excuse those on two-way frontage roads have when they end up driving the wrong way on an interstate. In order to do that, though, we need to shorten the distance for folks between their access point to I-10 and their feeder road. Old Fred cuts the distance between Ralph Fair and Fair Oaks roughly in half.
    It also provides an additional distribution route for traffic from the growing Leon Springs/Fair Oaks Ranch area to reach I-10. Right now all that traffic is squeezed into Ralph Fair and through Fair Oaks. With this overpass and its accompanying entrances and exits, we're effectively adding a third option for folks to use in order to reach I-10 and commute into town as they are.

    When will the construction of the north bound I-10 off ramp at Hwy 46 in Boerne be completed? This has been going on with little completion for over a year and there doesn't seem to be much current effort to complete it. This intersection is a daily mess. Thanks!
    - Mike
    We're still looking at spring 2017 for completion of this project. We don't have anything going on at the intersection, though, so we shouldn't really be impacting that much at all. None of the lane shifts we've had there actually impacts the operation of the intersection. What you're likely seeing in your daily commute is additional traffic from a rapidly growing section of Boerne.

    On Hwy 46 just East of Boerne the speed limits coming into town are way to fast. There has already been a fatality accident in that area. Traffic should slow down before the Esperonza sub division. Traffic from there to Charger Blvd should not be 50 mph, and from there to the bend at the Kendall County Fair Grounds should be lower than 45. Speed is a proven factor in all accidents. This area is becoming very populated. The limits really need to be lowered. Please!
    - Rodney
    Rodney, there's a specific process for setting our speed limits and our processes rarely yield a lowered speed limit. That said, we checked with our traffic engineer, who dug this information out for us about a rarely used provision in our policy allowing local governments to conduct their own speed studies on state highways, then make their own recommendation to us:

    ==================================================
    TxDOT’s Procedures for Establishing Speed Zones, Chapter 4, Section 2Speed Zones Unacceptable to a CityAlthough TxDOT has the authority to alter the speed limits on highways within the corporate limits of cities or override a speed limit set by city ordinance on such highways, it is intended that studies be made and recommendations be presented to the city for their acceptance and passage of a city ordinance to establish city speed zones. TxDOT should make every effort to have reasonable speed limits established.In the event that a city will not accept the zones within its corporate limits as submitted by the district, and it is not possible to reach an agreement with the city on reasonable and prudent speed limits, then the district should prepare one strip map showing the city’s preference and one strip map showing TxDOT’s  recommendation. Both strip maps should be submitted to TRF along with the district’s request for Transportation Commission action for making one of the zones effective.  When the commission minute order has been passed, the district should send a copy of the minute order, along with a copy of the strip map, to the city.The setting of speed limits within a city by commission minute order should only be used as a last resort; TxDOT should make every effort to secure the cooperation of the city so that the zones will be set by city ordinance.
    ==================================================

    Friday, October 21

    Next week's construction-related closures

    I-10 – Seguin
    • Tuesday, October 25. 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Westbound main lanes at FM 78. The right lane will close while crews place bridge support beams. This closure includes exit 607. Traffic will follow the posted detour route.
    • Tuesday, October 25 at 9 a.m. until Wednesday, October 26. at 5 a.m. Westbound frontage road between Hwy 123 and Business 123. The left lane will close to stage materials for bridge work.
    I-10 – Fair Oaks Parkway
    • Monday-Wednesday, October 24-26. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, at Fair Oaks Parkway. The right lane will close while crews set barrier.
    I-10 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Monday-Friday, October 24-28. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Main lanes, both directions, between I-410 and I-35. The right lane will close while crews pour concrete.
    I-35 – New Braunfels
    • Sunday-Monday, October 23-24. 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound main lanes between the Comal-Hays county line and FM 306. Alternating lanes will close while crews lay asphalt.
    I-35 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Northbound exit to westbound I-410. Alternating lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will exit Walzem and continue along the frontage road to reach I-410.
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work.
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work.
    • Monday-Friday, October 24-28. 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. daily. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work.
    I-35 – East San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between I-410 and Broadway. Alternating lanes will close while crews lay asphalt.
    I-410 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Eastbound exit ramp to Randolph Boulevard and the city of Windcrest. The ramp will close while crews do bridge work. Traffic will exit Thousand Oaks, turn around and return to Randolph Boulevard to reach its destination.
    I-410 – East San Antonio
    • Current through Friday, December 2. Southbound main lanes over North WW White. The right lane will close while crews repair damaged bridge rail.
    I-410 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Friday-Saturday, October 21-22. 11 p.m. until 3 p.m. Southbound main lanes between Military Drive and Hwy 151. The left two lanes will close while crews pour concrete.
    US Hwy 281 – Central San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Northbound main lanes between West Basse and I-410. Alternating lanes will close while crews resurface the road.
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Main lanes, both directions, between I-35 and I-410. Alternating lanes will close while crews work on guardrail. This closure includes ramps as needed. Traffic will follow the posted detour route.
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Airport and Josephine. Alternating lanes will close while crews do bridge work. This closure includes ramps as needed. Traffic will follow the posted detour route.
    Loop 1604 – North San Antonio
    • Monday, October 24. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Eastbound main lanes between Huebner Road and Stone Oak Parkway. The right lane and shoulder will close while crews repair signs.
    Loop 1604 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Friday-Saturday, October 21-22. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. Southbound frontage road at Alamo Ranch Parkway. All lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will turn right onto Alamo Ranch Parkway, turn around and re-enter the frontage road to reach its destination.
    • Monday-Tuesday, October 24-25. 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. daily. Southbound frontage road at Alamo Ranch Parkway. All lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will turn right onto Alamo Ranch Parkway, turn around and re-enter the frontage road to reach its destination.
    • Friday-Saturday, October 28-30. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. daily. Southbound frontage road at Alamo Ranch Parkway. All lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will turn right onto Alamo Ranch Parkway, turn around and re-enter the frontage road to reach its destination.
    Hwy 151 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Sunday, October 23 until Sunday, October 30. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Westbound main lanes between I-410 and Westover Hills Boulevard. The right lane will close while crews do survey work. This closure will include ramps. Traffic will follow the posted detour route.
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Frontage road, both directions, between I-410 and Hunt Lane. Alternating lanes will close while crews repair the road.
    • Tuesday-Wednesday, October 25-26. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. Westbound main lanes between Wiseman Boulevard and Loop 1604. The right lane will close while crews do electrical work.
    • Wednesday-Thursday, October 26-27. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. Eastbound main lanes between Loop 1604 and Wiseman Boulevard. The right lane will close while crews do electrical work.
    • Current until December 2016. Westbound exit ramp to Ingram and Potranco roads. The ramp will remain closed while crews install bridge support structures for the direct connector ramps being constructed.
    Other roads – New Braunfels
    • Monday-Friday, October 24-28. 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. FM 306, both directions, between River Chase Drive and Western Oaks Drive. One-way traffic will be controlled by flaggers while crews install underground drain structures across the road.
    • Tuesday-Wednesday, October 25-26. 8 p.m. until 6 a.m. FM 306, both directions, at the intersection of Hoffman Lane. One-way traffic will be controlled by flaggers while crews rebuild the intersection.
    Other roads – Seguin
    • Tuesday, October 25. 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. FM 78, both directions, at I-10. All lanes will close while crews place bridge support beams overhead. Traffic will follow the posted detour.
    • Current until Saturday, December 31. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. King Street, both directions, between Cedar Street and US 90. All lanes will close while crews install storm drains and rebuild the road. Traffic will use Hwy 123 as a detour.
    Other roads – Boerne
    • Tuesday-Friday, October 25-28. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Scenic Loop Road, both directions, at I-10. Traffic will be reduced to one-way, controlled by off-duty officers while crews do roadwork.
    • Monday-Friday, October 31-November 4. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Scenic Loop Road, both directions, at I-10. Traffic will be reduced to one-way, controlled by off-duty officers while crews do roadwork.
    Other roads – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28, 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Randolph Boulevard, both directions, between Crestway and I-35. Traffic will be reduced to a single lane, controlled by off-duty police, while crews do overhead bridge deck work.
    Other roads – South San Antonio
    • Current until Friday, October 28. 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. daily. Northbound Palo Alto Road (state Highway 16) between South Zarzamora and I-410. The right lane will close while crews resurface the road.
    Other roads – Southeast Bexar County
    • Sunday-Friday, October 23-28. 7 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Northbound WW White between the intersection of WW White and SE Military and I-10. The right lane will close while crews resurface the road.
    All closures are pending weather.

    Thursday, October 20

    Mail Bag: I-10 from Leon Springs to Boerne

    Over the last 4-6 weeks we've had a few questions about the various I-10 projects now active between Leon Springs and Boerne. For those not familiar, here's a brief list of what we've got going:
    We've also got an expansion project coming to I-10 in 2017, where we'll be adding two lanes in each direction between La Cantera Parkway and Ralph Fair Road ... but we've not started that yet, so we won't say much about it here for now.
    Anyway, without further ado, here are the questions:

    First, love your blog!
    What are the current projected timelines for the remaining work from Ralph Fair to Fair Oaks on I-10, namely: 
    • New Bridge at Old Fredericksburg Rd 
    • Bridge at Fair Oaks Rd 
    • Conversion of frontage roads to one-way 
    Also, is the westbound exit to Fair Oaks Rd scheduled to be moved farther east before the frontage roads are converted to one-way. 
    I remember reading that all this work would take at least three more years, but can't find that blog post.
    Thanks for keeping us updated!
    - AJ
    Can you provide an update on when the sections between dominion, Boerne stage road, and Ralph Fair will be complete? What is delaying the opening of the lanes on the frontage roads?
    - Christina
    Project update on the I-10 Old Fredericksburg Road overpass? Still on schedule? Whats with the uneven bumpy widening of the east bound frontage road south of Fair Oaks Parkway overpass?
    - Peter
    The completion date for the overpass at Old Fred is still targeted for mid-2018. Sundt is staying on pace with work on this job and trying to speed up where possible. Don't tell too many folks, but they gained nine days on their schedule last month!
    Conversion of the frontage roads to one-way between RFR and FOP will happen when we finish the overpass at Old Fred. Again, that's mid-2018.
    Sundt is working hard on the outside of the frontage roads right now, as well as building up the approaches to the new overpass bridge. If all goes well the bridge supporting drill shafts will be finished this month, allowing concrete crews to start making the support columns through the month of November. On the frontage roads, Sundt wants to be all done with driveway construction before Thanksgiving (sidewalks will be under construction through the rest of the year).
    By the way, Sundt is getting their subcontractor (Austin Materials) to address the bumpy ride on the frontage roads, as well as repairing a couple of potholes that are forming on the main lanes.
    The bridge at Fair Oaks just started this month (Oct. 3) and should wrap up mid-2018. We'll be monitoring this one close to keep it on track. 

    Why do your personnel only work one, and at the most, two days a week on a project and then there is no further work until the next week when they may or may not work one or two days again. Why can't you finish a project in a timely fashion rather than taking up to 2 years to finish and then blaming the weather when the project goes beyond it's estimated completion date. 
    To me, it's not the weather, it's the inefficient method of construction. 
    I live in the I-10W corridor and now have found out it will take 18 months to put in a new bridge at the FOR exit!
    - Gayle
    Why does it appear that there is no work occurring in the construction zones on both the west and east bound frontage roads on I-10 between Boerne Stage Rd and Ralph Fair Rd. The area in front of LaQuinta that appeared is be mostly complete is closed adds to the congestion in that area. I never see anyone working there. The same is true with the Frontage Rd eastbound in front on the new WalMart. Opening this section would relieve congestion at Boerne Stage Rd. What's the delay?
    - Robert
    Why is it your contractors cannot finish just one project? The construction you are doing between the Dominion and Ralph Fair is absolutely terrible. There are literally thousands of residents terribly inconvenienced because of a lack of proper project planning. Your inability to even finish the Ralph Fair area is forcing so many people to be late for work and school. And now you want to start the Fair Oaks project, which is going to be even more of a nightmare without a proper turn around lane, that so many of us will be forced to use.
    - Dave

    First of all, we feel pretty similar about the pace of production and are trying to spur along the work wherever we can. Texas Sterling is keeping with their current baseline schedule, which reflects delays from utilities and from weather - the utility delays were particularly hampering for this project. Those delays have now pushed work well beyond our initial project completion date and Texas Sterling no longer has the available resources to knock the job out (those resources were committed elsewhere some time ago). With a full compliment we might have the job finished by Thanksgiving. Unfortunately that's not the hand we are dealt on this job and we're pushing the best we can to finish by the end of the year. 
    With that in mind, TSC is dividing their forces between work items on the eastbound frontage road near Wal-Mart (need to have the full section finished before reopening this) and east of Boerne Stage (still a lot to do to build the new on-ramp, which will allow them to build the new exit; the remaining work on the frontage road itself will then follow).
    On the westbound side TSC still has curb and sidewalk between Dominion and Fralo's. that bridge at Boerne Stage which has gummed up the elementary school commute lacks bridge rails and approaches, and is currently set to open by Thanksgiving. The last bit, approaching Ralph Fair, has been opened up a bit recently but TSC still has the new RFR exit to finish tying in - that will happen when the bridge by Rudy's is open. 
    Bottom line - TSC is devoting all their available resources to the project and they're keeping pace with the schedule they've submitted to us. We're trying to find areas to improve the pace, but this is the deal we've got for right now.
    As for the relationship of this project to others, folks should note each project out there has a different contractor. RELMCo Incorporated has the Fair Oaks Parkway bridge, and that work shouldn't impact at all the project schedule on the project at Boerne Stage Road.

    It appears that construction has stopped on the I-10 and Scenic Loop project in Boerne. What's the story?
    - Pamela
    The simple answer is we've got a quality control issue the contractor is looking for a fix on. When Austin Bridge and Road put in a temporary wire wall - that wire-mesh wall acting as a temporary retaining wall to allow crews to build the bridge approach and the permanent retaining wall simultaneously - our inspectors noticed some problems. We've been working the last week or two to find a fix, and the folks at Austin Bridge have submitted some paperwork to our bridge division to show what they have will indeed work.
    Until it's all ironed out, they really can't do much. Since this is an issue caused by the contractor, we are still charging time against the contract, so this could cost Austin Bridge a bit if it's left untended too long.
    We're hoping to see progress on that bridge resume next week. If our engineers disagree with the Austin Bridge position on the current wire wall, we will require them to tear down everything and start over - at their cost. Right now, though progress is minimal (or, as you've pointed out, non-existent), everyone on the project is actually trying to save a little time (and, yes, money).
    In the meantime, and to Austin Bridge's credit, they are doing work down on the intersection area as they are able during this down time.

    UTSA Boulevard - traffic switch is coming....

    We’ve got some work upcoming - including a major traffic shift - those in the UTSA community should be aware of. That includes those who live in the Auburn Ridge neighborhood.

    Friday night at midnight (think of it 12:01 Saturday morning, or 11:59 Friday night ... you get the idea) we’ll start some pretty intense work at the intersection of Ximenes and UTSA Blvd. We’re rebuilding the intersection completely here, trying to make it so we don’t have to get in there again later in the project. Look for a slight temporary traffic shift over the weekend at this location, and all traffic to UTSA via Ximenes will use Bauerle instead.

    How will this impact you? Well, if you're just driving through on UTSA Boulevard, you won't see much of an impact. You'll still have one lane in each direction and, beyond an occasional minor hold-up while someone moves some equipment around, you'll get through just fine. If you're heading into UTSA campus, though, just know you'll be doing so through Bauerly. Or Barshop. Your choice.

    Things should be back to “normal” by Monday morning.

    The weekend of October 29 we’ll be doing much the same thing at the intersections at Valero Way and at Bauerle Road. By the time we’re all done with work at those locations (in time for the Oct. 31 morning commute) we should have all traffic flipped over onto the new pavement lanes.

    Again, if you're just running through UTSA Boulevard, you won't see a major impact. But if you're headed into UTSA campus you'll be doing so through Barshop or Ximenes ... and if you're aiming for Valero campus, try getting there via Loop 1604 instead. (The Bauerle entrance to UTSA could remain closed until Wednesday, so if that's your route you should be prepared.)

    Once the switch to the newly constructed half of the road happens, the dedicated left turn into Sienna Way will not exist – this is temporary. Curran Construction will make a priority building the road widening at the Sienna intersection to have that left turn lane back in action before Thanksgiving (the goal is to have it done in about two weeks, weather permitting).

    The same left-turn situation will apply at Bauerle for the next few weeks as well. If Baurle is your normal way into UTSA from Babcock, consider using Valero Way or Ximenes.

    This is all work that’s being re-sequenced per request of the contractor. The idea here is to eliminate one of the steps in the project phasing and speed up the job a bit – likely shaving as much as 6 weeks off the project duration to avoid any potential delays perpetrated by some utility problems we had earlier in the job.

    Wednesday, October 19

    Don't Mess with Texas with The Tyler Rose

    If you're a football-loving Texan (are there any other kind of Texans?), you probably have some love for Earl Campbell. If not ... well, we hear Oklahoma can be nice this time of year.


    You've probably also heard the phrase "Don't Mess with Texas". Did you know that phrase is a registered trademark of the Texas Department of Transportation? Heck, it's even 30 years old and known as one of the most recognizable branding campaigns in the nation. But do you know what the message is really trying to communicate to folks across the state?

    If you're not clear on our DMWT message, perhaps The Tyler Rose can help. During the copious amounts of football you're no doubt watching on Thursday nights, Saturdays, Sundays and Monday nights, you may well see this brief spot featuring Campbell in his trademark straightforward manner reminding you to keep your trash in trash cans.


    Litter on our roads continues to be a costly problem as Texas grows by more than 650 people every day. Last year we spent $32 million cleaning up nearly half-a-billion pieces of litter across the state. That’s a lot of money that could have been used for something more productive like building or maintaining our roadways.


    So help us help you. Next time you're grabbing a Whataburger, pay close attention to the message on that beautifully striped bag and toss your trash where it belongs. You just may save us enough money to build that overpass you keep asking us for!

    PS: if you're looking for a PSA to run with your own media outlet, we're happy to have you run one of these. The high-res, broadcast ready PSA is available by going to our campaign page in our Media Center. You'll also find a 15-second version there if that's more your speed.

    Friday, October 14

    Next week's construction-related closures

    I-10 – Fair Oaks Parkway
    • Monday-Wednesday, October 17-19. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, at Fair Oaks Parkway. The right lane will close while crews set barrier. 
    I-10 – East San Antonio
    • Saturday, October 15. 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Westbound main lanes between I-410 and WW White. Alternating lanes will close while crews repair the road. 
    I-35 – New Braunfels
    • Monday, October 17. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Northbound main lanes at York Creek. The right lane will close while crews do concrete work. 
    • Monday-Tuesday, October 17-18. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Northbound main lanes at Alligator Creek. Alternating lanes will close while crews do bridge work. 
    • Tuesday-Wednesday, October 18-19. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Northbound main lanes at York Creek. Alternating lanes will close while crews do bridge work. 
    • Tuesday-Friday, October 18-21. 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound main lanes between the Comal-Hays county line and FM 306. Alternating lanes will close while crews lay asphalt. 
    I-35 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Monday, October 16-17. 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. Southbound exit to southbound I-410. The connector will close while crews install concrete rail. Traffic will exit George Beach, turn around and reach southbound I-410 from the northbound I-35 frontage road. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Northbound exit to westbound I-410. Alternating lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will exit Walzem and continue along the frontage road to reach I-410. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    • Monday-Friday, October 17-21. 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. daily. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    I-35 – East San Antonio
    • Sunday-Thursday, October 16-20. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound main lanes between I-410 and Broadway. The right lane will close while crews lay asphalt. 
    I-410 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Eastbound exit ramp to Randolph Boulevard and the city of Windcrest. The ramp will close while crews do bridge work. Traffic will exit Thousand Oaks, turn around and return to Randolph Boulevard to reach its destination. 
    I-410 – East San Antonio
    • Current through Friday, December 2. Southbound main lanes over North WW White. The right lane will close while crews repair damaged bridge rail. 
    • Sunday-Monday, October 16-17. 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. Northbound connector to northbound I-35. The ramp will close while crews install barrier. Traffic will exit Space Center Drive, pass through Rittiman Road and use the next available ramp to get to northbound I-35. 
    I-410 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Sunday-Monday, October 16-17. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. Northbound main lanes between Marbach and Military. All lanes will close while crews move construction equipment. Traffic will exit Hwy 151, follow the frontage road and re-enter at the next available ramp. 
    • Sunday-Tuesday, October 16-18. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound main lanes between Culebra Road and Military Drive. Alternating lanes will close while crews restripe the road. 
    • Monday-Friday, October 17-21. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both lanes, between Marbach and Military. The left two lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. 
    US Hwy 281 – Central San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21. 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Main lanes, both directions, between Airport and Josephine. The right lane will close while crews work on guardrail. This closure includes ramps as needed. Traffic will follow the posted detour route. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Airport and Josephine. Alternating lanes will close while crews do bridge work. This closure includes ramps as needed. Traffic will follow the posted detour route. 
    Loop 1604 – North San Antonio
    • Monday, October 24. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Eastbound main lanes between Huebner Road and Stone Oak Parkway. The right lane and shoulder will close while crews repair signs. 
    Loop 1604 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Current through Wednesday, October 19. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, at Hwy 151. Alternating lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will use the frontage roads to reach its destination. 
    • Current through Wednesday, October 19. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound frontage road at Alamo Ranch Parkway. Alternating lanes will close as needed while crews do overhead bridge work. 
    • Current through Sunday, October 16. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Northbound main lanes at Hwy 151. All lanes will close while crews resurface the road. Traffic will exit Hwy 151, turn around at Wiseman Road and re-enter Loop 1604 from westbound Hwy 151. 
    • Saturday, October 15. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Southbound entrance ramp from Shaenfield. The ramp will close while crews repair guardrail. Traffic will continue through Culebra Road to enter southbound Loop 1604. Traffic to Hwy 151 should go to New Guilbeau and turn around to reach the direct connector. 
    • Tuesday, October 18. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Frontage roads, both directions, between Hausman and Babcock roads. The right lane will close while crews survey the road. 
    Hwy 151 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Current through Friday, October 21. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly, weeknights only. Westbound frontage road between I-410 and Potranco Road. All lanes will close while crews pour concrete overhead. Traffic will use West Military Road to reach its destination. 
    • Current until December 2016. Westbound exit ramp to Ingram and Potranco roads. The ramp will remain closed while crews install bridge support structures for the direct connector ramps being constructed. 
    Other roads – New Braunfels
    • Monday-Friday, October 17-21. 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. FM 306, both directions, between River Chase Drive and Western Oaks Drive. Traffic will be reduced to one-way traffic, controlled by flaggers, while crews install drain pipes under the road. 
    Other roads – Seguin
    • Current until Saturday, December 31. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. King Street, both directions, between Cedar Street and US 90. All lanes will close while crews install storm drains and rebuild the road. Traffic will use Hwy 123 as a detour. 
    Other roads – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21, 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Randolph Boulevard, both directions, between Crestway and I-35. Traffic will be reduced to a single lane, controlled by off-duty police, while crews do overhead bridge deck work. 
    Other roads – South San Antonio
    • Sunday, October 18-Sunday, October 25. 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. daily. Northbound Palo Alto Road (state Highway 16) between South Zarzamora and I-410. The right lane will close while crews resurface the road. 
    Other roads – Southeast Bexar County
    • Sunday-Friday, October 16-21. 7 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Northbound WW White between Sinclair and I-10. The right lane will close while crews resurface the road. 
    Other roads – Northwest San Antonio
    • Tuesday, October 18. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Bandera Road, both directions, between Quincy Lee and Cedar Trail. The right lane will close while crews survey the road. 
    All closures are pending weather.

    Tuesday, October 11

    Is the "zipper merge" rude?


    So apparently this has become a trending topic in transportation circles. Several departments of transportation are publicly pushing a discussion on the issue, and we're seeing the topic pop up in social media feeds and on the news itself.
    It's the "Zipper Merge".
    The idea is simple: when approaching a merge situation on a road or highway - that is, when two lanes move down to one - the merge should take place as near to the merge point as can be done. Doing so can improve traffic flow and safety.
    However, folks aren't doing it for a number of reasons. With this in mind, we wanted to take a moment to address the issues surrounding the Zipper Merge.

    I don't like waiting to change lanes until the last minute

    The feeling of trepidation over merging safely and appropriately are very real in heavy traffic situations. If you're moving at any sort of speed - be it 40 miles per hour or 70 - you don't want to make that merge at the last minute, risking the chance someone in the lane you're moving to is stubbornly unwilling to allow you the chance to get in. We get it - we're all about safety here.
    The Zipper is most effective during heavy traffic, so you won't likely use this if you're moving at 70 miles per hour. So don't worry about this issue if you're cruising. Just continue about your business.
    If you're moving through traffic, we'd hope you're using your signal every chance to get. We're also hoping you're following Texas law by using those turn signals at least 100 feet before you make your move (you can use your signal further than 100 feet away from your move, though). This should let others know of your intent.
    Frankly, the hesitation to merge at the end stems from the assumption it's every driver for themselves out there. That's not the way we should be driving! If everyone uses the Zipper, this trepidation shouldn't even exist. In order to get there, we need to agree collectively to use the Zipper.

    I don't want to be rude
    We have no idea who made this meme,
    but we love the sentiment. Thank you,
    Google search, for helping us find this!
    The only reason this is even a thing is because of all the folks who are doing it wrong. This includes the folks that move over at the first sign of a need to merge - sometimes more than a mile in advance - and get irritated at those who use the lane that's left vacant.
    Here's the thing: we have standards telling us how to set up those orange barrels. If we didn't want you using a lane, we'd put those orange barrels in it. If there are no orange barrels in a lane, it's because we want folks to use that lane.
    Because of folks who merge early and get frustrated, road rage becomes a major factor here. Unfortunately it's misdirected and, in most cases, the individuals getting frustrated are the ones truly at fault. Heck, one poor guy posted a video to YouTube shaming folks, when he was the one in the wrong (disclaimer: strong language in the linked video ... viewer discretion advised).
    The bottom line: it's not rude to use that open lane, it's actually the way things are supposed to work.

    Does it really move traffic faster?
    In a word: yes. A 2008 study by the Minnesota DOT says the reduction in traffic backup is 40-50 percent. You read that right: by using the Zipper, you're cutting traffic in half. By the way, they also observed a safer merge and less road rage up there. Those friendly Minnesotans also discovered the Zipper put an end to the frustrations of folks trying to get to exit ramps or turnoffs blocked by that really long backup filled by early mergers.
    Minnesota isn't alone. In 2014 the Washington State DOT promoted the Zipper, and the conversation started rolling. The popular tech publication Ars Technica did a piece on the issue that same year.
    Some are calling the Zipper, or late merge, a "new" concept, but the reality is it's been employed across the globe for some time. Some countries - like Germany and Austria - require it by law.

    Here are what others across the country are saying:
    A graphic representation used

    by the Arkansas HTD promoting

    use of the Zipper
    • A representative of the Alabama Department of Public Safety discussed the Zipper with The Huntsville Times six years ago.
    • The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities got into the fray through Twitter earlier this year.
    • The Arizona DOT branded the Zipper as a new merging method to get buy-in from folks driving along their major projects on I-10.
    • The Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department began pushing the Zipper in 2015.
    • Per the FHWA in 2012, a driver in California had a Zipper graphic placed on his car to educate drivers nearby. Oddly enough, the California DOT has thus far remained skeptical of the technique - one of two states in America to do so.
    • The Colorado DOT posted a video to Facebook in 2014, hoping to encourage the Zipper.
    • In a work zone safety document from 2012 the Connecticut DOT advocated the Zipper in heavier traffic conditions.
    • Last month Delaware Online posted a piece reflecting what's being said elsewhere, encouraging drivers there to do the same.
    • All the way back in 2009 Florida DOT published a paper regarding the strategy behind the late-merge system (the engineering term for the Zipper).
    • The Georgia DOT posted in 2014 this WSJ piece discussing virtues of the Zipper.
    • University of Hawaii Professor of Driving Psychology Leon James is quoted a few times on our resistance to the Zipper, including this piece in Canada. Canada.
    • The Idaho Transportation Department has been talking about the Zipper since at least 2011.
    • Officials from a variety of agencies are telling Illinois media outlets to take turns at the merge point or caution against trying to prevent folks from using the extended lane that's closing.
    • The Indiana Toll Road is trying to get folks to use the Zipper where possible, and INDOT is starting to design highway on-ramps to employ the zipper permanently.
      This unofficial bumper sticker
      was developed by a driver in Iowa
    • This op-ed from an Iowa reporter confesses her hesitance and eventual embrace of the Zipper.
    • Kansas DOT has a great YouTube video of two traffic cones discussing the merge, and is leading the way on this topic.
    • The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet discusses the Zipper on their official site. Pretty cool stuff.
    • Folks in Louisiana have a lot of other issues to worry about, but the Zipper is still making its way into news media there.
    • The town of Lewiston, Maine, posted signs directing what they call an "alternate merge" movement - which is basically a Zipper - and the Portland Press-Herald got their editorial board together to endorse Zippers to Mainers. For real.
    • The Washington Post positioned the Zipper against other issues Maryland drivers are facing back in 2015.
    • The Massachusetts DOT discussed the dynamic merge - their version of the Zipper - in a series of public meetings earlier this year.
    • Michigan DOT employs a new orange sign with a zipper on it, reminding drivers to use the Zipper Merge.
    • Googling "zipper merge" yields this story about the nice folks in Minnesota still getting used to the Zipper, though MnDOT is among the leading agencies championing this method.
    • Mississippi is one of the few states relatively silent on the issue....
    • Af all the videos out there, the one by MoDOT is our fave. Missouri is all-in with the Zipper.
    • The conversation in Montana is much more grassroots - take a look at the comments section on this piece.
    • Remember all that fuss about the Zipper in Indiana? That's because of studies conducted by folks at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
    • The folks at Boulder City (Nevada) Police Department have this little ditty jumping on the Zipper bandwagon.
    • New Hampshire Public Radio got in on the Zipper craze in 2014.
    • The Neward (New Jersey) Star-Ledger points out there's no law regarding the Zipper, but drivers should do it anyway. Or else.
    • With a major project in Albuquerque, the NMDOT has asked folks to do the Zipper.
    • Apparently the New York Times has dubbed those merging early "Lineuppers", but this practice is discouraged after visiting with engineers.
      The NCDOT started posting these signs
      in construction zones earlier this year
    • Drivers in North Carolina are seeing a new sign on NCDOT projects encouraging the Zipper.
    • A Reddit user in Cincinnati implored Ohio drivers to read up on the Zipper.
    • The folks involved with Sooner Politics seem to think Oklahomans really need the Zipper.
    • Joseph Rose of the Oregonian loved endorsements of the Zipper, and raved about studies that showed its effectiveness in 2014.
    • Drivers in Pennsylvania got schooled by publications in Lancaster, Reading and from PennDOT itself on the Zipper.
    • Rhode Island may be smaller than Bexar County, but the Zipper is still an issue there.
    • South Carolina shares the opinion of pretty much everyone: the zipper merge is the most efficient option out there.
    • Tennessee is the other state that likes the early merge over the Zipper. In fact, it's actually illegal to do the Zipper up thataway - they consider it a violation of the "no passing zone".
    • Texas ... well, you're reading what we think about it right now!
    • All the way back in 2007, early proponents of the Zipper appealed to the righteousness of drivers in Utah to merge later.
    • Vermont's DOT encouraged the Zipper back in 2013 for a project in Montpelier.
    • Virginia DOT published a paper in 2004 recommending the Zipper in a 3-to-1 merge, as well as using it nominally (under heavy traffic) in a 2-to-1 or a 3-to-2 merge.
    • We already pointed out Washington's advocacy of the Zipper, but here's another piece from the PacNW, just for fun.
    • Another great DOT video - this one from Wisconsin.

    Friday, October 7

    Next week's construction-related closures

    I-10 – Fair Oaks Parkway
    • Monday-Wednesday, October 17-19. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, at Fair Oaks Parkway. The right lane will close while crews set barrier. 
    I-10 – Leon Springs
    • Monday-Friday, October 10-14. 8:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Main lanes, both directions, between La Cantera Parkway and Ralph Fair Road. The right lane will close while crews do survey work. 
    I-35 – New Braunfels
    • Tuesday, October 11. 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. Northbound main lanes at Alligator Creek. Alternating lanes will close while crews move barrier. 
    • Tuesday, October 11. 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. Southbound main lanes at York Creek. Alternating lanes will close while crews do bridge work. 
    I-35 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Northbound exit to westbound I-410. Alternating lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will exit Walzem and continue along the frontage road to reach I-410. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews widen the road. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between AT&T Center Parkway and Binz-Engleman. Alternating lanes will close while crews do finish work. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Frontage roads, both directions, between AT&T Center Parkway and Binz-Engleman. The left lane will close while crews do finish work. 
    • Monday-Friday, October 10-14. 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. daily. Frontage roads, both directions, between Rittiman and Walzem roads. Alternating lanes will close while crews do road work. 
    • Monday-Friday, October 10-14. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily. Frontage roads, both directions, between AT&T Center Parkway and Binz-Engleman. The left lane will close while crews do finish work. 
    I-410 – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Eastbound exit ramp to Randolph Boulevard and the city of Windcrest. The ramp will close while crews do bridge work. Traffic will exit Thousand Oaks, turn around and return to Randolph Boulevard to reach its destination. 
    I-410 – East San Antonio
    • Current through Friday, December 2. Southbound main lanes over WW White. The right lane will close while crews repair damaged bridge rail. 
    • Sunday-Monday, October 9-10. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. Northbound connector to northbound I-35. The connector will close while crews set barrier. Traffic will exit Space Center Drive, pass through Rittiman Road and enter northbound I-35 at the next available ramp. 
    • Monday, October 10. 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Main lanes, both directions, at WW White. Alternating lanes will close while crews restripe the road. 
    I-410 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Monday-Friday, October 11-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Culebra Road and Hwy 151. The left two lanes will close while crews install barrier. 
    US Hwy 281 – Central San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, between Airport and Josephine. Alternating lanes will close while crews do bridge work. Ramps will close as needed. 
    Loop 1604 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Current through Wednesday, October 19. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Main lanes, both directions, at Hwy 151. Alternating lanes will close while crews do overhead bridge work. Traffic will use the frontage roads to reach its destination. 
    • Current through Wednesday, October 19. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Southbound frontage road at Alamo Ranch Parkway. Alternating lanes will close as needed while crews do overhead bridge work. 
    • Saturday, October 8. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Northbound main lanes at Culebra Road. The right lane will close while crews work on Transguide equipment. 
    • Saturday-Sunday, October 8-9. 9 p.m. until noon. Southbound connector to eastbound Hwy 151. The direct connector will close while crews move barrier. Traffic will turn around at Wiseman Road and use the connector from northbound Loop 1604. 
    • Sunday-Monday, October 9-10. Noon until 5 a.m. Northbound ramp to eastbound Hwy 151. The ramp will close while crews move barrier. Traffic will exit Shaenfield, turn around, enter southbound Loop 1604 and use the direct connector to reach Hwy 151. 
    • Sunday, October 9 until Sunday, October 16. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Northbound main lanes at Hwy 151. All lanes will close while crews resurface the road. Traffic will exit Hwy 151, turn around at Wiseman Road and re-enter Loop 1604 from westbound Hwy 151. 
    • Monday, October 10. 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. Southbound frontage road at New Guilbeau. The left lane will close while crews pour concrete. 
    • Tuesday, October 18. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Frontage roads, both directions, between Hausman and Babcock roads. The right lane will close while crews survey the road. 
    Hwy 151 – Northwest San Antonio
    • Current through Friday, October 21. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly, weeknights only. Westbound frontage road between I-410 and Potranco Road. All lanes will close while crews pour concrete overhead. Traffic will use West Military Road to reach its destination. 
    • Current until December 2016. Westbound exit ramp to Ingram and Potranco roads. The ramp will remain closed while crews install bridge support structures for the direct connector ramps being constructed. 
    • Saturday-Sunday, October 8-9. 9 p.m. until 9 a.m. Westbound frontage road between I-410 and Potranco Road. All lanes will close while crews pour concrete overhead. Traffic will use West Military Road to reach its destination. 
    • Sunday-Tuesday, October 9-11. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Westbound main lanes between I-410 and Hunt Lane. The right lane will close while crews set barrier. This closure includes the entrance ramp from Ingram Road. 
    Other roads – New Braunfels
    • Monday-Friday, October 10-14. 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. FM 306, both directions, between River Chase Drive and Western Oaks Drive. Traffic will be reduced to one-way traffic, controlled by flaggers, while crews install drain pipes under the road. 
    Other roads – Seguin
    • Current until Saturday, December 31. 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. King Street, both directions, between Cedar Street and US 90. All lanes will close while crews install storm drains and rebuild the road. Traffic will use Hwy 123 as a detour. 
    Other roads – Boerne
    • Monday-Wednesday, October 10-12. 9 p.m. until 5:30 a.m. nightly. River Road, both directions, between Main Street and Herff Road. One-way traffic control will be used while crews resurface the road. 
    Other roads – Northeast San Antonio
    • Sunday-Friday, October 9-14. 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. nightly. Randolph Boulevard, both directions, between Crestway and I-35. Traffic will be reduced to a single lane, controlled by off-duty police, while crews do overhead bridge deck work. 
    Other roads – South San Antonio
    • Sunday, October 18-Sunday, October 25. 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. daily. Northbound Palo Alto Road (state Highway 16) between South Zarzamora and I-410. The right lane will close while crews resurface the road. 
    Other roads – Southeast Bexar County
    • Monday, October 10. 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. US 181, both directions, at Foster Road. Alternating lanes will close while crews restripe the road. 
    • Monday, October 10. 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. FM 3432, both directions, between Loop 1604 and the Wilson County line. Alternating lanes will close while crews restripe the road. 
    Other roads – Southwest San Antonio
    • Monday, October 10. 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Loop 13 (Southeast Military Road) between the Bergquist Gate and Selfridge Road. Alternating lanes will close while crews restripe the road. 
    Other roads – Northwest San Antonio
    • Tuesday, October 18. 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Bandera Road, both directions, between Quincy Lee and Cedar Trail. The right lane will close while crews survey the road. 
    All closures are pending weather.
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