Houston’s biggest road projects: The SH 288 expansion

Houston Highway Construction

HOUSTON – Houstonians have been patiently maneuvering through the twists, turns and overall tumult of the State Highway 288 expansion project since October, 2016, when the project began.

The project stretches along 10.3 miles of SH 288 from the Southwest Freeway (US 59/I-69) near Downtown Houston to the Harris/Brazoria county line at Clear Creek, just south of the South Sam Houston Tollway (Beltway 8). It includes the following improvements:

  • Four new tolled lanes, two in each direction, within the existing, previously grassy median of the SH 288.
  • A new Beltway 8 interchange.
  • A new South Loop (IH 610) interchange.
  • A new Texas Medical Center (TMC) interchange which will include two direct connect ramps/bridges at the TMC.
  • A new Southmore bridge over SH 288.
State Highway 288 Expansion Project. Courtesy: TxDOT

The SH288 expansion is valued at $815 million, which includes design and construction. Construction is expected to be complete in the summer of 2020.

When complete, SH 288 within Harris County will be configured with a combination of free and managed lanes, much like the Katy Freeway outside of the IH-610 West Loop is configured.

SH 288 configuration pre-and post-expansion. Courtesy: TxDOT

The expansion is necessary to accommodate the increasing traffic flow on SH 288. Metro Houston continues to expand in Pearland and Brazoria County in general. The freeway capacity between this area and the TMC and Downtown needs to be increased not only to meet today’s demands, but the projected increase in demand from decades more growth.

Project status updates and general information is available from TxDOT at drive288.com.

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