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20120411-cityofmissionrevisedlogoNEWMISSION — The Shary Road and U.S. Expressway 83 intersection is the most congested corridor in Hidalgo County, according to a survey done by the Hidalgo County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO).

To help accommodate the traffic, Alex Meade, CEO of the Mission Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), asked the Mission City Council to approve a $142,597 expenditure from the new Mission Corridors Infrastructure Fund.

MEDC plans to engage L&G Engineering services for the Shary Road traffic improvement project. The total cost of the project is estimated around $554,190. Meade said about $168,000 would come from the MPO, $234,593 from the Texas Department of Transportation and MEDC paying $142,597 for the project.

Gustavo Lopez of L&G Engineering, the firm working on the project, said the area from Sunset Lane through Business 83 to Expressway 83 and to Colorado Boulevard south of the expressway would be studied. Engineers will also look at the business traffic at the frontage road intersection.

Throughout the week, engineering crews were filming the intersection at various times of the day to identify peak hours of congestion and the different locations that bottle up in traffic.

To help in the immediate future, Lopez said that lights between Business 83 and the expressway would be synchronized to help the flow of traffic.

Long-range plans include adding two additional lanes moving traffic underneath the   expressway. That would be a total of eight lanes to increase traffic capacity.

Lopez said that public hearings would be held in June before design plans could begin. If all goes as planned, the environmental clearances and designs could be completed with construction of the project beginning around March 2013.

Lopez said the design would not adversely impact any of the nearby buildings, as all construction would be within the existing right-of-way.

Because TxDOT allocated funding along with Hidalgo County and the City of Mission, Lopez said the project would start faster than if one of the entities had to wait for future funding.

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