After years of planning, design and public input meetings, the Irving City Council awarded a construction contract for $22.2 million on July 22 for improvements along Irving Boulevard. Phase 1 of the project will run along Irving Boulevard, from O'Connor to Sowers Road and begins Nov. 15.
Irving Boulevard reconstruction is the main public infrastructure project in the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District No. 2 and supports the city’s Road to the Future program. The 1-mile construction project will improve the pedestrian experience by creating a more walkable downtown. Improvements include roadway paving with parallel parking; drainage, water and wastewater system upgrades; and pedestrian and bicycle transit enhancements.
Additionally, the project will include architectural enhancements at intersections and improve beautification of the Irving Heritage District. Roadway improvements will run along Irving Boulevard from Strickland Plaza to Sowers Road; Britain Road from Second Street to the DART/TRE railroad right-of-way; and O’Connor Road from Second Street to the DART/TRE railroad right-of-way. Construction is scheduled to run through 2023, weather permitting.
Including engineering and design costs, the $25.6 million project will add 37 parallel parking spots, including four handicap locations between Britain and O’Connor Roads. Other upgrades to transit in the area include four new DART bus stops, bicycle lanes and sidewalk expansion.
Additional amenities include new benches, installation of canopy and ornamental trees along with upgraded landscaping and meandering low walls running east and west. New streetlamps also will be installed with LED lighting. The light standards are the same fixtures as those installed in the Las Colinas Urban Center.
Irving Boulevard will be enhanced at several key intersections with monument design and paving upgrades. The design of the masonry and paving upgrades will mimic a bird’s eye view of Millennium Fountain.
Irving Boulevard reconstruction is part of the city’s long-term plan to revitalize the downtown Heritage District and draw new residents, visitors and businesses to the community. In recent years, the city worked on numerous enhancements in and around the Heritage District, including:
- The redesign and construction of Heritage Park, which is slated for completion in December.
- Main Street Plaza.
- Centennial Park historical plaque installation.
- Lighting and pump upgrades to Millennium Fountain.
- Additional statues at Veteran’s Memorial Park.
- Various road construction and paving projects.
- Delaware Creek drainage improvement projects.
- The Delaware at Heritage Crossing single-family housing development.