Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes ofwebsite accessibilityRep. Jackson backs bill to prep I-27 for expansion | KVII
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Rep. Jackson backs bill to prep I-27 for expansion

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Rep. Ronny Jackson is sponsoring a bill in Congress that could eventually lead to expanding Interstate 27 across the High Plains.

In a Tuesday statement, Rep. Jackson said he had signed on as a co-sponsor of the Port-to-Plains Highway Act of 2021.

The bill, also sponsored by Rep. Jodey Arrington and Rep. Henry Cuellar, would change Interstate 27's designation on the Interstate Highway system.

Under the provisions, the interstate would be designated as a route, which Jackson said would clear the path for I-27 to be extended throughout the Panhandle.

"In the long term, expanding and modernizing I-27 through the Texas Panhandle will promote growth by connecting rural areas to the federal Interstate Highway system, strengthen avenues for trade which is particularly advantageous for TX-13’s agriculture industry, increase safety, and save billions in travel costs," said a statement from the congressman, in part.

Rep. Arrington said Monday that the Port-to-Plains plan would extend I-27 north past Amarillo, eventually to the Canadian border, and south to Laredo near the border with Mexico.

Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill in 2019 directing state agencies to research the cost and benefits of such an extension within the state.

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Other entities have supported changing I-27's designation, including the Amarillo Chamber of Commerce, Amarillo Economic Development Corporation, Amarillo Metropolitan Planning Organization and the cities of Amarillo, Canyon and Dalhart.

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