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The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Alternate route to I-35 now open

Devon Crew

FM 110 North opened Dec. 21, 2023, completing the East San Marcos Loop. FM 110, an alternate route to avoid congestion on I-35, is a loop east of I-35 from south of Kyle to south of San Marcos.

FM 110 North has one lane in each direction, 10-foot shoulders and a bridge over SH 21. It begins east of I-35 at Yarrington Road to SH 80. This alternative is expected to “enhance safety and mobility” through reducing congestion between San Marcos and Kyle.

“As Central Texas continues to grow in population, alternative options will help drivers spend less time on the road,” Antonio Lujan, public information officer for TxDOT, said. “FM 110 is for local commuters and is designed to meet the demands of the fast-growing corridor.”

Construction on the north section of the loop began in March 2022 and was funded by TxDOT, Hays County and the city of San Marcos according to Hays County Road Projects.

The San Marcos area had a record number of fatal car crashes in 2023, with the San Marcos Police Department attributing many of them to I-35 and the construction in or around it. Lujan hopes FM 110 will help alleviate traffic problems on I-35 especially as projects continue in the area.

“FM 110 is designed to mitigate congestion and accommodate new growth in this fast growing community,” Lujan said.

As for other congested areas, there are still closures on I-35 and SH 123/Loop 82 for its reconstruction and ramp improvements according to TxDOT. These projects include a single-lane closure from CM Allen Parkway to Guadalupe St. heading southbound and a closure of 1-35 northbound at Aquarena Springs Dr.

Ceiara Canada, a San Marcos resident who works in New Braunfels, has taken I-35 to work everyday for the past year and avoids FM 110.

“Personally, I like I-35, and it does get congested sometimes, but any interstate gets traffic,” Canada said. “I’m not sure this new route could prevent congestion and car wrecks. I think the results will be the same as it already is.”

Debra Lee, a San Marcos resident, said she avoids I-35 whenever possible because of traffic. With her son living in Martindale, she now takes FM 110 daily.

“During peak rush hours, there’s still a mile and a half of cars backed up at those stop signs,” Lee said. “I think it would’ve helped if they had put in stop lights where the four way stops are to keep traffic moving a little smoother.”

Canada said I-35 is not as well lit at night time as she’d prefer and has avoided FM 110 for similar reasons.

According to Lujan, there will be lighting at various intersections along FM 110, including SH 80, SH 21 and I-35 to promote safety along the corridor. There are not any weight limits or width restrictions on FM 110. Lee said because of this there has been a lot of truck traffic.

Through message boards placed near the corridor, TxDOT is working to keep residents in the know of the new road being open and closures throughout the interstate.

“As this is an entirely new option for central Texans, we ask drivers to pay attention to road signs as they navigate this area and the new roadway,” Lujan said.

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