SH 121 (Chisholm Trail Parkway) Corridor Management in Johnson and Tarrant Counties

The North Texas Tollway Authority (NTTA), the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) and the City of Fort Worth, in conjunction with a Citizens Advisory Group, cooperatively developed a Corridor Master Plan to guide the design development of the SH 121 corridor with respect to aesthetic features.

As part of the Corridor Management Team, IEA was responsible for coordinating the design of two project sections along the 25.7-mile corridor. The project started at the IH 30 interchange in Fort Worth and moved southwest where it crossed the Trinity River in three project sections, the Union Pacific Railroad in three sections (including the Davidson Yard), the Fort Worth and Western Railroad in three sections, intersected with major freeways, IH 20 and SH 183, abd interchanged with 12 city streets before ending in Johnson County at FM 1187. IEA’s two management sections are Section 2, a 3.1-mile, six-lane, new controlled tollway, and Section 2B, which is a 0.8-mile, six-lane, new controlled access tollway that crosses the Union Pacific Railroad Davidson Yard.

During the design approval process, IEA reviewed and monitored schedules for each project relating to plan delivery milestones such as 65%, 90% and Final Plans. IEA provided agency coordination and approval from TxDOT, City of Fort Worth, Tarrant Regional Water District, Army Corps of Engineers, Fort Worth and Western Railroad, and Union Pacific Railroad. They also provided right-of-way (ROW) acquisition, and utility coordination and relocation along the corridor.

As all six projects moved toward construction, construction sequencing and critical path schedule reviews were used. IEA met with the Section 2B scheduler to analyze the sequence of work over the rail yard to ensure the elements of the Railroad Agreement with UPRR were met. The construction team was limited to closing four tracks as the construction of the three bridges progressed across the yard.

Challenges: Challenges of this project schedule were accessibility issues to the rail yard for construction equipment, materials, and manpower, crane pick point determinations for large steel beam placement, coordination of rail yard operations below the bridge construction, and a 1-year construction time limit in the yard to construct three bridges and demolish the existing bridge.

Life Cycle Cost Analysis: At the beginning of the program, IEA was tasked to analyze the life cycle cost for different types of barriers for use on SH 121. IEA analyzed the initial cost, maintenance cost and life expectancy of five barrier options. From the analysis, NTTA selected Metal Beam Guard Fence with galvanized steel railings and posts as the most beneficial barrier.