By Katherine Gibbs
The Texas Department of Transportation started road construction to modify three miles of Texas Highway 317 in Jan. Belton has been experiencing a lot of growth with the development of new subdivisions and businesses so there has been an increase in traffic and congestion.
Ken Roberts, public information office for TxDot said the project was designed to increase safety by widening the roadway and adding a continuous left turn lane from FM 2305 to SH 36 in the northwest corner of the city limits of Temple. It will also add safety end treatments to culvert ends at cross drainage locations under the roadway and adjoining private driveways. The work is being done by APAC-TEXAS, Inc. of Dallas, at a cost of $2.3 million.
Roberts advised residents and people traveling to expect temporary lane closures, delays and some congestion between the hours of 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily until the project is completed.
The work is currently on schedule and is due to be finished in the fall, weather permitting. School starts Aug. 22, but the transportation department for the Belton Independent School District isn’t worried about the construction impacting them.
“I don’t anticipate that the construction will result in any changes to the bus routes,” said Lucy Kerley, transportation director for the BISD.
Kyle DeBeer, communications director for BISD, advised drivers to give themselves a little extra time when traveling somewhere around the start or end of classes because it can take a few days to find the route that works for them.