Big Spring Economic Development Corp. Votes 'Yes' on I-27 Resolution

Big Spring Economic Development Corp. Votes 'Yes' on I-27 Resolution

BIG SPRING, TX (KWES) - The Big Spring Economic Development Corporation (EDC) voted unanimously Tuesday night to pass a resolution backing the possible extension of Interstate 27 through the city, along Highway 87.

Similar resolutions have been passed by the Big Spring City Council, Howard County Commissioners Court, Howard College and other entities.

I-27 currently only stretches between Lubbock and Amarillo, but could ultimately act as a trade route from Canada to the southern tip of Mexico, with Big Spring acting as a key destination along the way. Gregg Street would become Business 87, while relief routes along Highway 87 would be developed into the new section of I-27.

"That would make us the crossroads of the nation," said Gloria McDonald, a Ports-to-Plains Alliance board member pushing for local support of the long-term project. "They're already building roads and on their way to making it happen [in Mexico]. This would facilitate the transportation of goods and services, and allow for an economic and industrial boom in Big Spring."

Extending I-27 through the city would also make Big Spring home to two interstate highways; one running north-south and another east-west. This infrastructure is currently only found in five Texas cities.

"A lot of major metropolitan areas have two interstates that cross in their communities," said EDC Executive Director Terry Wegman. "This would make Big Spring one of those communities and provide for potential growth and economic development."

The next step involves a "feasibility study" conducted by the Texas Department of Transportation, he explained. Final approval of the project depends on numerous factors, including federal funding.

Construction, if approved, may not start for years and likely would not be completed in Big Spring until 2035, Wegman said.