Longform

Plans for Texas' First Private Toll Road Roll On -- and Right Over People in its Path

For the people who live in the countryside east of Lake Ray Hubbard and Lake Lavon, the appeal is in the quiet rural roads, dense trees, wild animals in the woods and bright stars shining in the night sky.

To a Dallas company called the Texas Turnpike Corp., all that open space is a sign that not enough stuff has been built yet. "A review of an aerial map of the metroplex shows that there is a lack of development to the north and east of Dallas," said a report the corporation prepared and sent in 2012 to the mayor of Lavon, a small town on the eastern shore of the lake. "Lake Ray Hubbard and Lake Lavon have blocked access to the area and stifled growth."

Texas Turnpike Corp. had a fix for that "lack of development:" a private toll road, developed by none other than Texas Turnpike Corp. The corporation's report pointed to wealthier Collin County suburbs as an example of the positive effects of toll roads: "Similar to the lack of growth in northwest Collin County prior to the opening of the Dallas North Tollway, the area northeast of Dallas has not grown due to lack of adequate transportation infrastructure."

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Amy Martyn
Contact: Amy Martyn