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All 16.5 Miles Of The LBJ Express Scheduled To Open In Less Than A Month

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DALLAS COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) - Don't feel the need to rub your eyes to make sure you read this story correct! Officials with the LBJ Express Project say the entire length of the roadway will open three months ahead of schedule.

The nearly $3 billion highway reconstruction project is scheduled to be fully operational and open on Thursday, September 10. The project began in 2011 and includes the complete reconstruction of the main and expanded frontage lanes on Interstate-635, as well as building the new TEXpress managed lanes and other highway connector lanes.

Heather DeLapp, regional public relations manager for the project, said the roadway will almost double the existing roadway capacity. "The majority of the managed lanes were constructed sub-grade in a cantilevered depressed corridor traveling under the main lanes. The project also includes elevated managed lane connections on I-35E that feed directly into the managed lanes on I-635."

The new LBJ Express features a combination of four main lanes in each direction, two to three lanes of continuous frontage roads in each direction, and three managed toll lanes (TEXpress) in each direction. The cost to ride in the TEXpress lanes will vary, depending on the amount of traffic in the area. Builders say the goal is to keep traffic moving at a speed of at least 50 mph. (Click here to watch a video on how to use the TEXpress lanes.)

The TEXpress Lanes along the LBJ Express are part of a larger North Texas network that includes SH 114 and the North Tarrant Express. TEXpress Lanes will also be utilized along I-35W, I-30 in Tarrant County, SH 183 in Dallas and Tarrant Counties and I-35E in Dallas County.

Robert Hinkle, director of corporate affairs for the LBJ Express and North Tarrant Express projects, said, "The ultimate goal is to create a seamless transportation system that allows long-haul travelers along with regional and local commuters the ability to quickly, safely and reliably travel from one side of the DFW metroplex to other or anywhere in between."

The 16.5-mile LBJ Express connects with Interstate-35E, the Dallas North Tollway and US 75. The thoroughfare is estimated to carry more than 250,000 vehicles per weekday.

(©2015 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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