Houston traffic: West Loop and Southwest Freeway interchange to begin construction June 10

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — After a couple of delays, it’s officially time to brace ourselves for at least six months of a traffic headache.

The ramp connecting I-69/US-59 Southwest Freeway northbound to I-610 West Loop northbound officially shut down at 9 p.m. on Thursday. It’s the first of two major closures to happen.

You may remember that a few years ago, the Southwest Freeway that we all know and sometimes love was re-designated as I-69. But it still refers to the same stretch of highway.

And, it will always be US-59 in our hearts.

Trying to think of your shortcut already? Don’t worry! We’ve got the top detours in the video below.

All of this is part of a $259 million project to take down two existing ramps and reconstruct new ones that will enhance safety and improve mobility, according to TxDOT. Here’s what crews have planned.

I-69/US-59 northbound ramp to I-610 West Loop northbound

Tonight, crews closed the I-69/US-59 Southwest Freeway northbound connector ramp to I-610 West Loop northbound.

TxDOT says this entire ramp will be closed in mid-summer for approximately six months to make room for the construction of the new ramp. The new connector is expected to be completed early next year.

The closure will affect those in Sugar Land, Stafford and Sharpstown if you’re headed into downtown on Friday morning.

To try to get around the traffic, you may want to consider a side street.

You can try taking Westpark Drive or exit Chimney Rock and then head east on Richmond.

In addition, as part of this work, crews will close the Southwest Freeway main lanes in both directions at I-610 West Loop starting Friday at 9 p.m. until Monday, June 14 at 5 a.m.

I-69/US-59 southbound ramp to the I-610 West Loop northbound

On June 14 at 9 p.m., crews will close the I-69/US-59 southbound connector ramp to I-610 West Loop northbound.

The ramp will be closed for about two months to make room for the construction of the new one. The new ramp is slated for completion in fall of this year.

These ramps will both be closed at the same time, at least for a short time. The new ramps will be rebuilt in the exact same spot as the old ones, so crews simply can’t keep the old ramps open during construction.

READ ALSO: Study identifies cars in Houston most likely to reach the 200,000 mile mark

TxDOT says the contractor has incentives on this work so they stand to receive additional funds for early or on-time completion.

In the past several months, we’ve seen the opening of two new ramps: I-610 West Loop southbound to I-69/US-59 northbound and the ramp at I-610 West Loop northbound to I-69/US-59 southbound and Chimney Rock. Still, this is a lengthy project.

Construction began at the interchange in September 2017 and is scheduled for completion in 2024.

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