WACO, Texas — The first phase of the Texas Department of Transportation's Mall-to-Mall project is slated to start Monday in Waco and will require a six-month road closure.
The project will require the closure of the Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR) U-turns at Beverly Drive, per TxDOT.
"To safely close the UPRR U-turns at Beverly Drive, crews will conduct various lane and ramp closures nightly from Jan. 31 through the morning of Feb. 5. Crews will install barrier and place temporary striping in the area," said TxDOT.
Jake Smith with TxDOT's Waco District said drivers need to eliminate distractions and keep their eyes on the road.
"It's not just for the safety of working, it's for your safety as well. Lane changes can happen, cars merging, so it's always best to pay attention and eliminate your distractions at any time, but especially in work zones," he said.
TxDOT’s Mall-to-Mall project spans from US 84 to Bagby Avenue. The project is planned to improve safety and mobility for motorists in the area. It will add continuous frontage roads, add U-turn bridges, reconfigure entrance and exit ramps, and reconstruct existing bridges.
The following areas will be closed during the nightly work:
• UPRR U-turns at Beverly Drive
• SH 6 west frontage road from the Bagby Avenue to the UPRR U-turn
• SH 6 west frontage road from the UPRR U-turn to Industrial Drive
• West off-ramp to Beverly Avenue
• West on-ramp before Beverly Avenue
• West off-ramp to Imperial Drive
• SH 6 east frontage road from the UPRR U-turn to Exchange Parkway
• East off-ramp to Bagby Avenue
"Whenever this project is all said and done, you will be able to travel in that corridor and you can travel on the frontage road from 35 to 84 without getting on State Highway 6," Smith told 6 News ahead of the closures. "Right now that is not the case, you have to utilize State Highway 6. The continuous frontage roads will really help with mobility and consistency."
The 3.5-mile project, undertaken by Webber, LLC, will cost approximately $55 million and is scheduled to complete in early 2024, weather permitting, per TxDOT.