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Texas U.S. Senator Ted Cruz recently introduced companion legislation for The Ports-to-Plains Highway Act in the U.S. Senate. Senate Bill 705 is co-sponsored by Senators John Cornyn and Kevin Cramer (North Dakota). Senate Bill 705 is identical to H.R. 1608 which was introduced by Congressman Jodey Arrington in the U.S. House on March 8.

The Ports-to-Plains Highway Act is proposed legislation which would expand Interstate Highway 27 north of Amarillo to Denver, Colorado; and south of Lubbock to Laredo.

Earlier this week, The Ports-to-Plains Alliance said in a newsletter, concerning the proposed bills in Congress, "We are very appreciative of the tremendous support and ongoing commitment from all of our elected officials. Their leadership is paving the way for more Ports-to-Plains success in our future."

The Ports-to-Plains Alliance also notes that the departments of transportation in the states of Texas, New Mexico, Colorado and Oklahoma have all submitted letters to Congress supporting that addition of the Ports-to-Plains corridor to the Interstate Highway System.

The proposed legislation would expand Interstate 27 into a four-lane divided highway. North of Amarillo, the IH-27 expansion would follow the current US 87, north to US 287, then continuing north to US 385, then going northwest following US 287 from Lamar to Limon (in Colorado), and continuing northwest to Interstate 76 in Colorado and finally west to Denver. IH-27 would be expanded south of Lubbock following US 87 to Texas State Highway 349 in Lamesa and then to Texas State Highway 158 south of Midland, then back to US 87 in Sterling City, continuing south to US 87 to San Angelo. IH-27's expansion would continue southward along US 277 to Eldorado, and then hit US 83 before merging with Interstate 35 north of Laredo.

TxDOT

IH-27 auxiliary routes are also planned using parts of US 87 in the northwest Texas Panhandle connecting to Interstate 25 in New Mexico and part of US 87 from Lamesa to Sterling City. Colorado State Highway 71 would also be upgraded from Limon to Brush.

The U.S. House has set April 14 as a day in which members of Congress can provide testimony about their legislative priorities.

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