Construction will begin next year on a $14 million project to raise and repair portions of Texas 87 on the Bolivar Peninsula that are prone to washing out during even weak thunderstorms.
The problem of water, sand and debris covering the road where Texas 87 meets Texas 124 near High Island has persisted for years.
“When this portion of the highway is impassable, it creates a danger for those living on the peninsula and first responders,” Galveston County Commissioner Ryan Dennard, whose precinct covers Bolivar Peninsula, said in a prepared statement. “I know how important this project is and I’m thrilled that the State of Texas has made this substantial financial commitment to solve this problem.”
In November 2015, Texas voters passed a proposition that freed up billions of dollars in sales and auto tax for highway projects like the one on the Bolivar Peninsula.
That same month, TxDOT hired Houston-based LJA Engineer for $212,000 to conduct a study of Texas 87, looking for long-term solutions.
LJA engineers suggested raising portions of the highway up to 7.5 feet, from the corner of Texas 124 and Texas 87 to Rollover Pass. Additionally, LJA suggested putting rocks on the beach and adding plant life that would serve as a natural barrier for the water and debris.
In the past six months, the state has made several temporary fixes along the highway. TxDOT installed concrete barriers in February that were intended to help keep sand and debris out of the roadway.