Trans Texas Corridor - Misconceptions

The following is a news release from Tx-Dot regarding recent meetings over the proposed expansion of I-35 and the Trans Texas Corridor:

Common misconceptions of the Trans Texas Corridor:

TTC-35 will be 10 miles wide.
Response: No. If federally approved, the study area
would be 10 miles wide. Then, additional studies
would be conducted within the 10-mile wide study
area to identify a final route. If roads, rail and a utility
corridor are located adjacent to each other, TTC-35
would be no more than 1,200 feet wide. Also, where
existing roads and railways can be incorporated, the
amount of right of way needed would be less.
TxDOT already knows the location of the project
and will direct Cintra Zachry where to build it.
Response: No. The location of TTC-35 is not yet
known. Like all transportation projects, TTC-35 must
go through a federally-required environmental study
to identify a route. Property cannot be purchased and
construction cannot begin unless TTC-35 has been
environmentally approved by the Federal Highway

By taking thousands of acres off the tax rolls, the
corridor will remove thousands of dollars and
cripple local governments’ ability to provide services.
Response: No. Businesses generate more in tax revenue
for local communities and school districts than
undeveloped. As with any transportation project,
business development will occur near the corridor
bringing increased tax revenue for local services.

TTC-35 will make it impossible for small communities
to exist due to access issues.
Response: No. According to state law, there must be a
direct connection to the TTC with interstate, state,
and US highways. Connections to farm-to-market,
county and local roads will also be considered as design
plans are developed.

TTC-35 will wipe out entire towns and communities.
Response: No. TTC-35 will go around populated
areas. In fact, the potential impact to communities is
one of the environmental factors considered in the
study. In addition, to encourage economic development
along TTC-35, there will be connections from
TTC-35 to communities along the corridor.

Counties will have to pay to build crossings over
the corridor and residents will have to pay to cross.
Response: No. Interchanges and overpasses will be
constructed as part of the TTC-35. Counties will not
have to pay for these connections nor will motorists be
charged to cross TTC-35.

All land will be acquired under eminent domain at
pennies on the dollar.
Response: No. Any land needed will be purchased and
property owners will be paid fair market value. There
will be an independent appraisal, an offer, and
opportunity for negotiation. If the property owner is still
not satisfied with the TxDOT offer, he has the same
due process rights of a jury trial through the judicial system.

TxDOT has the authority to condemn property for
private use and operate commercial facilities
associated with the Trans-Texas Corridor.
Response: No. TxDOT can only acquire property for
transportation purposes. If customer service facilities
are needed, such as gas stations or convenience stores,
TxDOT may acquire the land but the private sector
will provide those services. In other words, any
competition will be among private businesses and the
landowner retains development rights. According to
state law, Cintra Zachry, nor any other developer of
TTC projects, will be allowed to operate these facilities.