Interstate 69W Texas

I-69W Texas
History
North End
South End

Overview

Interstate 69W overlays the western 1.75 miles of the Loop 20 freeway between the World Trade Bridge and IH 35 in north Laredo. This stretch doubles as the southernmost stretch of U.S. 59. The planned route of IH 69W takes the interstate northeast from Laredo to George West, the future north end of IH 69C, and onward to Victoria and a rendezvous with IH 69E.

Loop 20/U.S. 59 east from IH 35 will become a part of IH 69W as upgrades to the roadway are completed. A two phase project was outlined in Summer 2014 for upgrading Loop 20 to a limited access highway.1 Phase 1 involves adding ramps at the exchange with IH 35, building new overpasses for the IH 69W main lanes and extending the freeway east to International Boulevard. Costing $24.5 million, work at the systems interchange with IH 35 runs until November 21, 2019. Once complete, the Loop 20/U.S. 59 freeway will extend nearly 2.5 miles east of IH 35.

Phase 2 will lengthen the freeway portion southward with interchanges added at Shiloh Road, Del Mar Boulevard, University Boulevard, Jacaman Boulevard and Airport Drive. Estimated at $21.5 million, the grade separation at Shiloh Road is anticipated to start by 2023. Work on the remainder of SL 20 south to BU-59Z is slated for the 2024-29 time frame.

History

The Texas Transportation Commission approved the redesignation of 1.4 miles of Loop 20 in Laredo as Interstate 69W on June 26, 2014. This followed approval by the Federal Highway Administration on June 17, 2014.1 The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) approved the realignment of U.S. 59 northward from Saunders Street along Loop 20 (Bob Bullock Loop) to the World Trade Bridge on May 29, 2014. The former route along Saunders Street west to IH 35 in Laredo was renumbered as U.S. 59 Business (BU-59Z).

Work broke ground on May 23, 2016 to convert the existing at-grade crossing between Loop 20/U.S. 59 and International Boulevard into an interchange. The International Boulevard Overpass Project required no additional right of way, reducing the overall cost.2 The $22 million project wrapped up in November 2017 after 18 months of construction.3

Route Information

  • North End – Laredo, TX

  • South End – Laredo, TX

  • Mileage – 1.4

  • Cities – Laredo

  • JunctionsI-35

Source: Texas Transportation Commission Minute Order June 26, 2014, December 31, 2018 Interstate Route Log and Finders List

Flyovers shuttle motorists from IH 35 to IH 69W and U.S. 59 at a partially built stack interchange. Photo taken 09/28/07.

Frontage roads extend U.S. 59 and LP 20 east from IH 35 to Bucky Houdmann Boulevard. The remainder of Bob Bullock Loop south to U.S. 59 Business (Saunders Street) travels as an at-grade highway.

North End US 59 / International Boulevard – Laredo, Texas

US 59 North at I-35

US 59 south at IH 69W - Laredo, TX

Curving westward across the north side of Laredo, U.S. 59 (Bob Bullock Loop) upgrades to a limited access highway beyond the right in right out (RIRO) intersection with Bucky Houdmann Boulevard. Photo taken 08/04/19.

US 59 south at IH 69W - Laredo, TX

The IH 69W freeway beginning spans International Boulevard. Completion of the freeway in November 2019 will provide a high speed route to IH 35. Photo taken 08/04/19.

South End – World Trade Bridge – Laredo, Texas

US 59 South at World Trade Bridge

IH 69W/US 59 south at FM 1472 - Laredo, TX

IH 69W/U.S. 59 south continue just a half mile from the ramps with IH 35 to FM 1472 (Mines Road). Photo taken 08/04/19.

IH 69W/US 59 south at FM 1472 - Laredo, TX

FM 1472 (Mines Road) connects IH 69W and the World Trade Bridge with El Portal Industrial Park and an array of distribution centers to the north. The World Trade Bridge opened to traffic on April 15, 2000. Photo taken 08/04/19.

IH 69W/US 59 south at World Trade Br - Laredo, TX

IH 69W and U.S. 59 south conclude at the frontage road turn off preceding the customs station for the World Trade Bridge. Photo taken 08/04/19.

US 59 North

IH 69W/US 59 north at FM 1472 - Laredo, TX

Leaving the port of entry and the World Trade Bridge, IH 69W and U.S. 59 span River Bank Drive ahead of the exit for FM 1472 (Mines Road). Photo taken 08/04/19.

I-35 North at US 59

IH 35 north at IH 69W/US 59 - Laredo, TX

Green outs applied to guide signs for Exit 8A along IH 35 north replaced SL 20 with both IH 69W and U.S. 59. Photo taken by Jeff Royston (03/16/16).

IH 35 north at IH 69W/US 59 - Laredo, TX

IH 69W and U.S. 59 combine west from IH 35 to the World Trade International Bridge linking Laredo, Texas with Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico. Photo taken by Jeff Royston (03/16/16).

Sources

  1. First Section of Interstate 69 Comes to Laredo.Alliance for I-69 Texas web site, June 26, 2014.
  2. “International Blvd. Overpass Project in Laredo begins May 23.” http://www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/media-center/local-news/laredo/025-2016.html Texas Department of Transportation web site, May 18, 2016.
  3. “International and Loop 20 overpass project complete.” KGNS-TV (Laredo, TX), November 10, 2017.

Page updated August 10, 2019.