The transportation situation in the Plano/Collin County area is going through some growing pains right now. Plans are being looked at for a way to ease traffic congestion on U.S. Highway 75, one of the area’s last toll-free highways. There are also some changes for Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) that are being explored.

Believe it or not, one of the proposals being considered for the U.S. 75 Corridor is the introduction of some toll lanes. To ease traffic congestion between LBJ Freeway and State Highway 121, one suggested plan calls for three managed toll lanes to be constructed under the frontage roads on each side of the highway. There would be four general-purpose lanes in each direction maintained at grade level. This is still in the feasibility stage, so no cost estimate or anything has been developed. Officials promise a thorough public hearing process before any final decision.

Even this plan for the added toll lanes is only a partial solution to the question of what to do about the increased traffic expected in the area. The Collin County area is expected to increase its population to 1.3 million by 2035. The plans for the addition of toll lanes to U.S. 75 are projected to accommodate about 330,000 vehicles daily. The traffic is expected to increase to about 400,000 vehicles per day. This means that more planning and studies will be needed.

One of the solutions to the heavy traffic could be an expansion of the rapid transit systems in the area. DART is looking at a number of proposals. One of them would include the building of a toll road to help finance a parallel bus rapid transit (BRT) line from Plano to McKinney.

The land they would use is already owned by DART. The two possibilities seem to be either extension of the Red Line Light-Rail system, or the BRT road, which would be used only by high-capacity buses. The light-rail extension is formidable in cost at more than 600$ million. The BRT route would only be about $150 million. However, getting the money up-front is a challenge because some of the cities that would be served are not at present member cities of DART. The citizens there would have to be convinced to allocate tax funds for it.

Whatever happens, it is clear that the various city and county administrations are looking for a way to serve the increasing population, and to deal with the increased traffic. This is a great time to purchase a home in Collin County. The Fejeran Group serves the entire North Dallas area including Plano, Frisco, Allen, McKinney, Garland, Van Alstyne, and Sherman. Contact me to find out how we can help you reach your goals!

Sheila Fejeran

(972) 984-0715