Conceived in 2007, the North Tarrant Express (NTE) is part of a $5 billion deal with international infrastructure financier Cintra to rejuvenate regional roadways without relying on gas-tax revenues (click here for more information). The project, which expands capacity in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, is scheduled to be completed by year's end.
In the meantime, the American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) is honoring the project's environmental sensitivity and involvement with local students.
ARTBA's GLOBE Award recognizes private firms, public agencies, material suppliers, and other project members for protecting and/or enhancing the natural environment in the planning, design, and construction of transportation projects.
NTE's project team's investigated and mitigated pre-existing hazardous materials in nearly 300 parcels; and developed an emergency management system that identifies, monitors, and minimizes environmental impacts.
ARTBA's PRIDE Award recognizes outstanding public education and engagement initiatives.
In addition to a $476,750 grant through the National Math and Science Initiative, the project team initiated a first-in-the-nation mentoring program and created advanced placement (AP) math and science classes at a high school along the project corridor.
The effort is designed to encourage students to pursue STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) studies as a viable path to future careers. Sixty-five of Haltom High School's 2,500 students are classified as economically disadvantaged.
In the first year, the number of qualifying scores on AP exams increased 22%. AP calculus, physics, and biology students recorded an increase in qualifying scores of 113%, 167%, and 400%, respectively. Enrollment in AP courses is 37% and 99% of the students complete the classes. The retention rate of AP teachers is approximately 80%.