Good news, folks: If you were at all worried that the nasty construction and closures along some of Houston's major highways and interstates were going to spoil your Thanksgiving travels, you can breathe a sigh of relief.
The Texas Department of Transportation tells us that, actually, it has specifically halted construction and lane closure along some of the most congested strips to allow for holiday traffic to move along swimmingly.
While north- and southbound lanes on I-45 in the downtown area, from I-10 to U.S. 59, were entirely closed this weekend due to the West Dallas bridge construction, TxDOT spokesperson Danny Perez says I-45 should be all set to go for the holidays and through this weekend (well, except for the usual bottleneck areas). And while westbound traffic along Highway 290 near the Beltway had to be detoured to the frontage road, Perez said all lanes will still be open by later Monday (though really, driving within those bacon-strip-thin lanes at 60 miles an hour to get to grandma's isn't necessarily something we wish on you anyway).
"We work really hard to keep all the lanes open during holidays," Perez said, "because even one small lane closure can really disrupt things."
Perez said that the only real area that seems to have problems for long-distance travelers every year is where Highway 71 meets with I-10. Travelers coming from Austin or San Antonio to get to Houston, or vice versa, usually all merge at once near Columbus, Texas. While Perez said the bottleneck may not be horrible enough to avoid entirely, it wouldn't hurt to check out alternate routes just in case.
Happy Turkey Day travels, y'all.
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