Parker County and other local officials will attend a ground breaking ceremony to celebrate the beginning of construction of the I-20 interchange at the Ric Williamson Memorial Highway at 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 14.
The ground breaking launches construction on the fifth and final phase of the project. The interchange and the accompanying 1.4 miles of roadway from Ranger Highway to I-20 are anticipated for opening in the summer of 2014. The impact on travelers between Palo Pinto County, Mineral Wells and the Metroplex will be significant once the project is completed.
"We are thrilled to be breaking ground on this final segment of the Ric Williamson Memorial Highway," Parker County Judge Mark Riley said. "Not only will this improve mobility and safety in and around Weatherford, but it will also have a positive impact on the future economic development of this area."
The largest project in the Parker County Transportation Bond Program, the RWMH now extends along the northwestern quadrant of Weatherford, connecting FM 51, FM 920, US 180 and Ranger Highway.
"This new and beautiful roadway provides an alternate route for commuters and trucks passing through the area," Riley said. "The Ric Williamson Memorial Highway is already helping to achieve the bond program's goals and has begun to diminish some of the truck traffic that moves around the square in downtown Weatherford.
The bond program was created to improve transportation infrastructure, relieve congestion, increase safety, improve air quality and facilitate growth and development in Parker County.
Parker County voters overwhelmingly approved the transportation bond in November 2008. The program encompasses 30 transportation projects, including railroad crossing and intersection improvements, road widening, new roads and bridges and drainage improvements.