One project to add passing lanes on SH 64 between Tyler and Canton has been completed, another is in progress, and still more are in the works as the calendar turns to 2014.

TxDOT contractor A.L. Helmkamp, Inc., of Buffalo, is scheduled to complete its $7.4 million project to add passing lanes between FM 314 and FM 858 in Ben Wheeler this fall. The project began work in November 2012.

“These projects to add passing lanes across the district have been highly successful in getting traffic moving again for pennies on the dollar,” said TxDOT spokesman Larry Krantz. “We’ve been able to add these passing lanes without having to purchase additional rights of way, which can spiral project costs out of control. Instead, we’ve maximized our available right of way footprint to allow traffic to adjust itself in a safer manner than crossing into oncoming traffic. This should cut down on fatal and other serious types of crashes in these areas.”

In addition to completing the first of the two passing-lane projects on SH 64, TxDOT contractors completed a $1.7 million project to rebuild FM 2339 between FM 1861 south of Martins Mill and FM 773 south of Ben Wheeler. Crews also put the finishing touches on the $3.6 million project to rebuild FM 17 between IH 20 in Canton and VZCR 1226, approximately three miles south of Grand Saline.

Elsewhere, projects to add shoulders to SH 198 between SH 243 in Canton and FM 316 in Phalba, on FM 316 between FM 1251 and FM 3080, and FM 314 between IH 20 and the Henderson County Line are all scheduled to let to contract this spring and begin work by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, TxDOT maintenance crews will be working this spring to prepare for the summer seal coat work scheduled for the following roadways:

  • US 80 – Between the Kaufman County Line and SH 64 in Wills Point
  • FM 47 – Between US 80 in Wills Point and IH 20
  • SH 64 – Between FM 16 east of Canton and FM 773 in Ben Wheeler
  • FM 773 – Between IH 20 and FM 279 in Ben Wheeler
  • FM 773 – Between FM 858 and the Henderson County Line