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TxDOT Celebrates 100 Years of Service - Ozona Celebration May 19
Contact: Karen A. Threlkleld, APR
Phone: (325) 947-9205
Date: April 25, 2017

San Angelo District hosts Ozona event May 19 - pays tribute to construction of Interstate 10 and to a collaborative history of moving people, goods across the Lone Star State

SAN ANGELO – The Texas Department of Transportation is celebrating a century of service this year with a traveling exhibit which includes a refurbished 27-foot-long 1918 Liberty Truck and other transportation memorabilia. The San Angelo District, in partnership with the Ozona Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center, will host a community event on Friday, May 19, 2017 at 10 a.m. in celebration of the occasion.

Festivities will begin at the Chamber’s Plaza, 505 15th St. in Ozona, with remarks from Crockett County Judge Fred Deaton, San Angelo District Engineer Mark Jones, and retired Sonora Resident Engineer Joe Lane. Mr. Lane is the only surviving resident engineer who oversaw the building of I-10. Following these remarks, guests will be invited into the Chamber to view two videos about the centennial. One video features the history of the agency for the last 100 years and the other features the history of the San Angelo District with interviews from retired and current employees.

TxDOT would like individuals to sign the centennial poster, take a selfie with "Miss Liberty," and enjoy light refreshments. The event will also feature lots of old photographs and exhibits. "Share a Memory" cards will be available for guests to write a memory of TxDOT. These cards will be placed in a time capsule later this year at the district headquarters in San Angelo, to be opened in 50 years.

The construction of 152 miles of I-10, spanning Kimble, Sutton and Crockett counties, was one of the most significant projects in the history of the San Angelo District. An 8.5-mile section starting at Taylor Box Road was the only section completed by 1969. The 1970s, however, brought the interstate to town. This decade saw the completion of a 10-mile section west of Ozona to Bachler Hill. Both sides of Gurley Draw were completed in 1976. This project involved a 5,000 yard concrete pour over the dirt elevation built up on both sides of the draw. The 600-foot span bridge over the Pecos River, 35 miles west of Ozona, was under construction in 1978. This $8 million dollar project was the largest and most challenging section of road built in the San Angelo District. It involved movement of 1.5 million cubic yards of excavation. "The Big Cut," as it was known, covered half a mile and required tiered blasting down 100 feet to reach the road base. The excavated rock was used to fill in the dry Pecos River bottom in an area that became known as "The Big Fill." The Big Fill raised the interstate more than 100 feet from the riverbed and required more than 4,000 feet of reinforced concrete pipe for drainage. The Big Cut and the Big Fill were finished in the 1980s and thus completed the 53 miles of interstate in Crockett County.

In 2002, Crockett County received $1,139,040.00 in funding from TxDOT’s Statewide Transportation Enhancement Program to build a visitor center in Ozona.

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The Texas Department of Transportation is responsible for maintaining 80,000 miles of road and for supporting aviation, rail, and public transportation across the state. Through collaboration and leadership, we deliver a safe, reliable, and integrated transportation system that enables the movement of people and goods.  Find out more at TxDOT.gov. "Like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.