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TxDOT breaks ground on I-20 reconstruction project at Ranger Hill

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EASTLAND COUNTY, Texas - Ranger Hill is a notorious stretch of Interstate 20 located eight miles east of Ranger that curves sharply around a steep climb, and more than 150 accidents have occurred there.

Wednesday, Texas Department of Transportation, alongside state and Eastland County leaders, broke ground on a $76 million reconstruction project to make the pass safer.

Ranger Hill is known by the Ranger Fire Department as a dangerous road because of its 6-percent grade, which is against safety standards. Severe weather and speed made the road even more dangerous, and Ranger Fire Chief Darrell Fox said the change is long overdue.

"We've had a lot of problems on this hill over the years. I've personally been working on this hill for 36 years and it's been a very dangerous situation here," Fox said. "We've had anything from several fatalities to one accident with 17 vehicles involved."

The project is fully funded by taxpayers. Eastland County Judge Rex Fields played a big part in helping launch the project.

The project is expected to be completed by 2020, with frontage roads, a 3.5-percent grade, and a third westbound climbing lane to accommodate smaller vehicles.

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