Lubbock city leaders plan to ‘hit the ground running’ with new road construction

Published: Nov. 16, 2022 at 8:44 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 16, 2022 at 10:16 PM CST
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Following the passage of the $200 million road bond proposal on Nov. 8, the Lubbock City Council was presented with the plan to build the roads over the next several years.

“In an ideal world, we’d build all of these in the first year,” City Engineer Mike Keenum told the Council. “That’s not realistic.”

Keenum called his department’s plan “aggressive,” but believes it’s achievable. After further budget steps by the Council, the City of Lubbock will have to enter into contracts with consulting firms to design the roads.

“We’ve got six pre-qualified firms,” Keenum said. “We’re already in negotiations with those firms to get contracts for the design moving forward. You’ll probably start seeing those on council meetings, hopefully the last meeting in December, we’ll see some. Then in January, we’ll see kind of the bulk of those. We’re moving quick. We’ve got the firms pre-qualified. That really helped us to slim down the timeframe that it’s going to take to start getting these projects going.”

Several of the projects will undergo design and right-of-way acquisition in the first year, 2023. However, construction is expected to begin on 98th Street from Alcove Avenue to Upland and 34th Street from Avenue Q to the Interstate as well as from Slide Road to Quaker Avenue. Residential street rebuilding is also anticipated to begin in the Dunbar/Manhattan Heights neighborhood.

“We’re going to hit the ground running and we’re not going to stop for about six years,” Keenum said. “That’s the plan. These are projected, so just keep that in mind.”

The projects are scheduled over five years, which is how the bonds will be issued. The entire $200 million will be issued in “tranches” for the next five years.

To see the timeline presented by the City of Lubbock, click here.

Keenum said he scheduled some sort of construction in all six council districts within the first two years. He added that some of the projects will face more challenges, especially with securing right-of-way and utility relocation.

“As we’re building the arterials, most of these are 110-foot that we need for right-of-way where it can actually build the road, build the sidewalks, the utilities behind the back-of-curb,” Keenum said. “We have to go acquire that property. Some landowners may be willing to dedicate that but we’re going to do what we can to get that property so that we can build the roads.”

Keenum told the Council that teams will be out along the road corridors engaging with landowners.

“We want to make sure that the citizens of Lubbock know that we’re not sitting on this, we’re moving,” Keenum said. “We’re gonna hit the ground running from day one.”