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AECOM to Deliver TxDOT I-35 Drainage Tunnels

The Drainage Tunnel follows I-35 from its northern terminus to Cesar Chavez Street, then under Cesar Chavez Street to a pump station at the 183 intersection.
The Drainage Tunnel follows I-35 from its northern terminus to Cesar Chavez Street, then under Cesar Chavez Street to a pump station at the 183 intersection.

AECOM announced on May 13 that it has been selected by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) to provide project inspection services for the construction of drainage tunnels for the next phase of its $4.5 billion Capital Express (CapEx) Central project in Austin. The project includes the delivery of two large-diameter drainage tunnels and a pump station to provide storm drainage infrastructure relieve flooding and improve safety along the vital I-35 corridor serving the state’s capital.

“With extensive experience working on more than 2,000 miles of tunnel projects worldwide, we are excited to partner with TxDOT on this technically complex project, which will serve as a key foundation for the CapEx Central project,” said Matt Crane, chief executive of AECOM’s U.S. West region. “We look forward to leveraging our team of multidisciplinary experts and utilizing our innovative tunneling technology to deliver a crucial component for one of the most important mobility projects in Central Texas.”

AECOM will oversee the development of two drainage tunnels along I-35 and Cesar Chavez Boulevard to collect stormwater and function as a drainage conveyance system, safely guiding water beneath the road without disrupting traffic or above-ground infrastructure, while the pump station will divert the accumulated water into the Colorado River. According to TxDOT, this eight-mile stretch of I-35 carries nearly 200,000 vehicles each day, serving as vital transportation link connecting Austin, Central Texas and beyond.

“We’re proud to continue our ongoing partnership with TxDOT to create a better-connected, dependable road network for Austin commuters,” said Mark Southwell, chief executive of AECOM’s global Transportation business. “Through our Think and Act Globally strategy, we bring a network of leading international drainage tunnel resources and best practices focused on helping ensure the resilience of Texas roadways well into the future.”

Once complete, the I-35 CapEx Central project is expected to enhance safety, alleviate congestion, optimize operations, and establish a more reliable route for all travelers, including bicyclists, pedestrians, emergency responders and transit users. The project will also reconstruct east-west cross-street bridges, add pedestrian and bicycle paths, and make additional safety and mobility improvements within the project limits.

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