Last April, when I heard from Carrie Chandler of H & R Block Fort Worth that the Chisholm Trail Parkway was scheduled to open to traffic on May 10th, I could not believe it! I had been watching the construction progress for the past couple of years, and it looked to me like the highway still had a ways to go with construction. There had been detours and road closures all over south Fort Worth, and I could still see disconnected overpasses looming over the Cityview business area. I just could not see how it would be completed in just a few short weeks. But sure enough, to my surprise, the CTP opened on schedule with The Chisholm Trail Events Run & Ride! (No I did not attend - It was my sons 18 birthday and not exactly his idea of celebrating!) However, I was still correct that the parkway was not complete. Even though it was open for traffic, not all on and off ramps were open or all connections complete. I will go into that in more detail in an upcoming post. Basically, it is not connected to the I-20 or I-30 yet, as it should and will be. Here is a map of what was complete as of opening day.
I could not wait to try the new parkway as soon as it was open for traffic. The next day, I was only passing by, but the traffic signal at the intersection to the entry by my home was just blinking red, causing a major traffic jam. Uh oh, I thought, trouble already? I did not venture onto the parkway that day, but was eager to check it out the next day. I had to drive to Cleburne for business! As I approached the intersection on Monday morning, there were traffic control officers directing traffic, as the signal was still not functioning. Fortunately, this did assist the traffic flow. But there were not many people getting on the parkway, most were just local traffic passing through. I did get on the on-ramp travelling south. There were very few cars, so I thought there would not be any patrol cars, and I didn't have to worry about my speed. Shortly, after thinking this, I saw another vehicle had been stopped by a traffic officer! Guess I was wrong, and glad it wasn't me. I now watch my speed on the parkway, and I suggest you do to!
On that first Monday, I saw nearly as many traffic patrol cars as I did civilians. But, I arrived in Cleburne in about half the time it used to take, with no traffic and in a much better mood than ever! How much did it cost me? Well fortunately for me, nothing. I have a toll tag that is provided by my husband's company at no cost to us at all! That makes it easy for me to explore the CTP at will so I can report back to you. But I know most of you do not have this luxury, so is it worth the price to you? My Neighbor, Carrie Chandler, says that her mileage to her H & R Block office was cut in half, and she used one less tank of gas in the month since the CTP opened! The route she previously traveled was mostly through stop and go side street traffic. Now she can zip on and off the toll road, saving time, money, gas and stress! So what do you think? Is that worth it? Well, you might say, it depends on the rates. What are they? The cost to drive the full 28 miles of the toll road from the Fort Worth to Cleburne is $4.91, as long as the vehicle has a toll tag. The cost doubles without a toll tag. If you drive on the toll road without a toll tag, you will be charged for Zip Cash through the mail. The NTTA website has a Trip Rate Calculator to help you figure out the cost of your trip on the CTP, as well as a page with a Toll Rate Map . Use these tools to decide if the cost is worth the trip to you. Check back next week to find out more about travelling the trail and the surrounding area.
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