Here is the original improvement plan TxDOT was showing in public meetings for neighborhoods along the Hwy 281 corridor for the last 6 years. This is the plan that was thrown in the trash pile and repackaged into the proposed toll plans for the region. Note the “letting dates” of 2003 and 2004 for the improvements at Redland Rd., Evans Rd., Stone Oak Pkwy., and Borgfeld Rd. – all bottle-necks today. Had this plan not been trashed, the improvements would be DONE today! The ORIGINAL cost for the first 3 mile stretch was only $48 million, now as a tollway the cost is $83 million ($77 million in gas taxes, $6 million in utility relocation costs). See the article with the new price tag as a TOLLWAY in print here.
In fact, since that article was published, TxDOT District Engineer David Casteel admitted at the Bandera Road Toll Road Debate May 17, 2006, that the entire ORIGINAL IMPROVEMENT PLAN all the way to the Bexar County line is 100% paid for! If you look carefully, the original plan for all 8 miles to the Bexar County line was $100 million. In this audio clip from the debate, Casteel admits there’s $100 million available in YOUR GAS TAXES RIGHT NOW to build the improvements on 281. The proof: TxDOT has the funds RIGHT NOW!! He reiterated that TxDOT has $100 million RIGHT NOW to build improvements to 281 during a Radio Debate on KSLR AM 630 on August 31, 2006.