Decades in the Making, Highway Opens in Fort Worth

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Alan Greer

Chief Business Development Officer

A decades-long effort to connect central and southwest Fort Worth culminated Sunday, May 11, with the opening of the Chisholm Trail Parkway. The Parkway, operated by the North Texas Tollway Authority, extends 28 miles from Interstate 30 in Fort Worth to US Highway 67 in Cleburne.

In the 1980s, Freese and Nichols played a key role in the road’s development by helping develop an alternate route that would not cut through Fort Worth’s Cultural District and Botanic Garden. Our team, led by Joe Paul Jones, determined that the new route was financially and environmentally feasible and would meet traffic demands. Today, much of the highway follows that route. (Read more in the Fall 1985 edition of the Freese and Nichols Newsletter.)

Later, as Chairman of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce’s Transportation Committee, Joe Paul established the Southwest Parkway Task Force. The Task Force is credited with getting the project moving again after it had stalled in the 1990s. (Read more about Joe Paul’s involvement in the Fort Worth Chamberletter: Teamwork Built Chisholm Trail Parkway)

In recent years, Freese and Nichols’ involvement has included two projects. We are providing resident project representative services, including development of a stormwater pollution prevention plan, for construction of the Parkway’s interchange at I-30. In addition, we are serving as architectural and urban design consultant by providing aesthetic enhancements for walls, bridges, columns, sign and gantry structures and monuments for the portion of the Parkway in Fort Worth.

Photo: Seattle artist Norie Sato, left, Freese and Nichols Architect Kirk Millican, and Martha Peters, Vice President of Fort Worth Public Art, with a banner on the Parkway median in south Fort Worth. The artwork, which depicts wildlife of the Trinity River watershed and a map of the Parkway route, is representative of Norie’s mosaics that will be completed along the Parkway this summer.

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Alan Greer, P.E., is the Chief Business Development Officer for Infrastructure in Fort Worth.