The Texas Department of Transportation on Thursday approved $140.9 million for the construction of the Diboll Relief Route, with the goal of completing the project in five years.
The U.S. Highway 59 Diboll Relief Route — also known as the Diboll Bypass or Diboll Loop — will extend east of Diboll and Burke from FM 2108 to 1.15 miles south of White Oak Creek, Rhonda Oaks, the TxDOT communications director for the Lufkin District, said.
It will meet interstate standards and serve as the primary evacuation route for this section of U.S. 59, Oaks said. It will also serve as a relief route for freight transportation and to efficiently move traffic along the U.S. 59 corridor, she said.
Construction is expected to begin in 2020, Oaks said.
“This project has been in the planning stages for many years,” she said. “The first schematics and environmental studies were done in 1999, but were halted because of budgetary constraints. After being identified as a top priority in Angelina County for the development of Interstate 69, the project was revived in 2013.”
The first steps will be to clear the right of way east of Diboll and to put bridge pilings down for the overpasses, Oaks said. There will be no disruption of traffic on U.S. 59 and the work will stay out of the way for anyone traveling on U.S. 59.
Sacyr Construction USA LLC from Miami will serve as the project contractor.
Designs and environmental re-evaluations were approved in 2016. The right of way acquisitions were completed and utility relocations started in 2019.