SH130 start date looms
TxDOT reps start right-of-way deals
By LPR Staff
The day that most Caldwell County residents have been either dreading or eagerly awaiting is finally here – the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) is pressing forward with construction of Segments 5 and 6 of State Highway 130.
The announcement came last week in the form
of letters sent to some 200 Caldwell County property owners, all of whom will soon be in negotiations for “right-of-way” acquisition for the highway project.
“We expect it to take almost 36 months to acquire all of the right of way for Segments 5 and 6,” said Jessica Schenk, the Public Information Coordinator for SH130. “At the beginning, we”re going to focus on the key locations, the places that will take longest to build, such as the locations of overpasses.”
Schenk said the first portion of the acquisition process should be complete, and construction ready to begin on the highway in the next 21 – 24 months.
Overall, the state expects to acquire around 3,200 acres of property for construction of the proposed tollway. Around 309 property owners, around 200 of which are in Caldwell County, will be affected by the construction.
The SH130 Concession Company, a corporation that is working on behalf and under the supervision of TxDOT, has taken charge of the acquisition process. They have partnered with another organization, O.R. Colan Associates, to coordinate and negotiate with Caldwell County property owners. O.R. Colan plans to open an office in Lockhart.
“When we got started, we wanted to make sure the property owners had somewhere they could go, right here locally and talk to a real person,” said Dennis Sedlachek, the Vice President of Right of Way for SH130 Concession Company. “There was talk for a little while about moving to San Marcos, or having an office in Austin, but since Lockhart is central and so close to the project, we decided being here will make it easier for the property owners.”
In another effort to make the transition, acquisition and relocation easier for affected property owners, O.R. Colan distributed a “relocation organizer kit” to each owner. The packet includes information on relocation options, owners” rights and real estate brokerage, as well as information about the involved companies and the proposed construction.
Further, it includes a “right of entry” document that will allow access to land surveyors, appraisers and environmental experts.
According to Schenk, kits were mailed to the 309 affected property owners last week, but will also be available at the O.R. Colan office, which is located at 1001 W. San Antonio Street (Highway 142) in Lockhart.