A transformation in traffic flow is under way in southwest Fort Worth, where motorists' patience likely will be tested as work crews begin the long process of extending the planned Chisholm Trail Parkway toll road over Interstate 20.
Beginning at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Interstate 20 will be closed to all traffic for about eight hours while workers pour a concrete bridge deck for a new southbound Chisholm Trail Parkway frontage road.
Traffic will be detoured to I-20 frontage roads until the freeway reopens about 5 a.m. Wednesday, said Val Lopez, a spokesman for the Texas Transportation Department.
Motorists are urged to use alternate routes.
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Also, beginning about 9 a.m. Tuesday, both directions of Texas 183, also known as Southwest Boulevard, will be reduced to one lane from Bryant Irvin Road to Crosslands Road for an extended period. That work is also needed to make way for the Chisholm Trail Parkway, Lopez said.
"For a third of a mile, that stretch will provide some space to begin constructing the connecting elements of the future toll road," Lopez said. "There's new frontage roads going over the highway where you had sky before."
The lane closure on Texas 183 likely will remain through spring 2013.
The Texas 183 main lanes are being rebuilt, Lopez said, and that process will include lowering them as much as 40 feet to make room for the elevated Chisholm Trail Parkway.
The Transportation Department's portion of the project is being paid for with $117 million in federal Recovery Act funding.
During the overnight freeway shutdown Tuesday night, eastbound I-20 traffic will exit at Bryant Irvin Road and follow detours to an on-ramp near Hulen Street. Westbound motorists will detour to the Texas 183/Southwest Boulevard split, to the frontage road, then left across Insurance Lane to the I-20 westbound frontage road and to the Bryant Irvin Road entrance ramp.
The Chisholm Trail Parkway is being built as a partnership between the Transportation Department and the North Texas Tollway Authority.
Financed by toll-backed bonds, the project will cost a total of $1.6 billion.
The tollway authority is responsible for building most of the 28-mile toll road, from Interstate 30 near downtown Fort Worth to U.S. 67 in Cleburne.
Tollway officials met last week with Johnson County officials in Cleburne and explained that they were on track to finance the project in October and open it to traffic by January 2014.
Gordon Dickson, 817-390-7796