(4/7/2004) Culberson, Wohlgemuth Seek Funds for Highway 21 Expansion
For Immediate Release
For Information Contact:
Todd Smith (512) 658-9699
Gina Hollenbeck (979) 224-2951
Congressman John Culberson R-Houston and Congressional candidate State Rep. Arlene Wohlgemuth R-Burleson announced the submittal of a $2 million appropriation request to the House Appropriations Committee to expedite completion of the Highway 21 expansion project at a press conference today.
Culberson, the only Texan on the Transportation Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, said he submitted the request after being contacted by Wohlgemuth. He explained the significance of the project to the 17th Congressional District:
“Arlene recognizes the important transportation issues facing all of the 17th Congressional District, even though she is not yet representing the Central and Southern regions. I was surprised to learn that Bryan-College Station community is one of the largest metropolitan areas in the United States that is not served by an interstate freeway. Inaccessibility to a major thoroughfare hampers the ability of goods to be efficiently transported from Waco and Austin, and deters major employers from locating facilities in the area,” Culberson said. “Arlene explained the economic and safety benefits a four-lane divided highway between I-35 and I-45 would provide to the Southern and Central regions of this district, and I agreed to help. I believe that the initiative shown by Arlene Wohlgemuth in addressing the Highway 21 project exemplifies the foresight, dedication and tenacity you can expect from her as your U.S. Representative.”
Wohlgemuth, who said this project has been brought to her attention by County Judge Randy Sims and many others while campaigning in the area, is adamant about addressing the transportation needs of the district in a timely manner. “With two major universities in this district, and three major population centers, the need for safe, accessible and well-maintained highways is of paramount importance. This project is huge in terms of the benefits it will provide to the communities in this area. Not only will it aid in the transportation of goods and the promotion of local businesses, it will also make travel safer by providing a four-lane divided road in lieu of the current two-lane road.”
When asked about her motivation for pursuing the Highway 21 project, Wohlgemuth responded by saying, “Judge Sims has been fighting the completion of this project for years now; I am pleased to be in a situation to help.”
Culberson, Wohlgemuth and Sims also met with members of the Bryan-College Station Metropolitan Planning Organization, the Chamber of Commerce Transportation and Legislative Committees and the Brazos Valley Council of Governments Regional Transportation Committee to discuss transportation issues in the region.
Projected construction costs for the entire project are $100 million, with right-of-way costs adding an additional $10 million. Once funding is approved, the Texas Department of Transportation estimates it will take 6 years to complete.
On the web: http://www.arleneforcongress.com