The Texas Department of Transportation is the principal regulating body that enforces and oversees road maintenance and construction in the Lone Star State. Aside from its 3,000 miles of interstate highways, the Department oversees the regulation of nearly 150,000 miles of state and local highways. To keep roads consistent, TxDOT drafts strict guidelines stipulating road proportions that are applied to highways throughout the state.
The minimum width for arterial travel lanes in urban settings is 11 feet, but in certain circumstances, the Department of Transportation will only require a 10-foot minimum width. Collector lanes in urban areas require a 10-foot minimum width, but in industrial settings, the width requirement is 12 feet. The minimum width requirement for local roads in urban settings is 10 feet, but may be as low as 9 feet in residential areas. All urban streets require median left lanes to be at least 16 feet, composed of a 12-foot lane and a 4-foot divider.
The minimum width of arterial traveling lanes on suburban roadways in Texas is 11 feet, but in certain circumstances, a 10-foot minimum is permitted. Collector travel lanes in suburban settings, on the other hand, have a minimum width requirement of 10 feet, but a 12-foot minimum is enforced in industrial areas. Two-way left-turn lanes are required to be at least 14 feet in width, but it is desirable for the lanes to be 16 feet, allowing for a 4-foot divider.
Two-lane Rural Highways
The minimum width for an arterial lane on a two-lane rural highway in Texas is 12 feet. As for collector lanes, the minimum width is set at 10 feet if there is fewer than 400 people who travel through the route on an average daily basis (ADT); 11 feet if there is between 1500 to 2000 people ADT, and 12 feet if there is more than 2000 people ADT. Local travel lanes in two-lane rural highways require the same minimum widths as collector lanes. Right-turn deceleration lanes are required to be a minimum of 10 feet wide.
Freeways and Multi-lane Rural Highways
All multi-lane rural highways require lanes that are at least 12 feet wide and are generally required to have a median that is at least 70 feet wide. The same goes for freeway lanes, which have a required minimum width of 12 feet.
- Photo Credit Road image by Janne Kallio from Fotolia.com
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