WORKING TOWARD REGIONAL GOALS
Since the 1980's, the Metroport Cities Partnership has worked to further regional goals by encouraging collaboration among our member communities for major projects. Transportation has been a major focus for more than two decades to ensure continued economic development in the region. The following projects are accomplishments of the Metroport Cities Partnership.
The first project was Highway 114 from Grapevine to Trophy Club. At that time, Highway 114 was a four-lane divided highway with four traffic lights interrupting traffic flow between Grapevine and Trophy Club. Extremely high traffic counts, including a flood of large, 80,000 pound "rock-haulers", caused dangerous situations to exist every day. The MCP became a catalyst to promote incremental improvement of Highway 114 by assembling assets in the form of land donations, design drawings, cash for improvements to critical intersections and, most importantly, strong support by local and county elected officials (all members of MCP) to advance the project. The MCP organized at least three large-group delegations to attend TxDOT Commission meetings, each time requesting assistance in specific portions of the project and offering various assets to the project. The lobbying efforts began in 1996 and the completed six-mile highway section (including four grade-separating bridges replacing the traffic lights) opened for traffic in February 2004, a mere "blink of an eye" in highway-building time. It was a remarkable process.
The second project addressed by the Transportation Committee was to improve FM 1938, a major highway connecting the large, talented labor base existing in the Mid-Cities area to the growing job centers located along Highway 114 in Westlake and Southlake.
State Highway 26 improvements through the Colleyville area as an extension of the work associated with the DFW Connector.
DFW Connector (formerly known as the "Funnel"), a $1.1 billion improvement package under construction at D/FW Airport, Grapevine and Irving. Jerry Hodge represented the City of Grapevine and served as Chairman of the MCP during the critical stages of this massive project.
The advance of the critical intersection of Highways 114 and 170 on the borders of Roanoke, Trophy Club and Westlake. The Mayor of Trophy Club provided support and guidance through the approval process to advance the project which is now under construction.
The MCP was fully engaged with the Texas Legislature as the attempt was made during the 2007 Legislative Session to suspend the use of a critical tool to advance new highway projects, the Comprehensive Development Agreement. State Representative Vicki Truitt lobbied strongly with other transportation advocates to exclude the region's critical projects from the moratorium. That effort was successful and allowed the critical projects to move forward when funding became available.
The MCP was able to assist the then-small town of Haslet as their main thoroughfare had become clogged with large 18-wheelers following the tremendous industrial growth in the Alliance Airport area. The Mayor of Haslet wanted to use the "louder, deeper" voice of the MCP to protect his citizens.