Cruz Introduces Legislation to Name Ports-to-Plains Corridor ‘Interstate 27’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) introduced legislation co-sponsored by Sens. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) to formally name the Ports-to-Plains Corridor as Interstate 27. Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-Texas) is introducing the legislation in the House.
About the legislation, Sen. Cruz said:
“I’m proud to have spearheaded and passed the first iteration of Ports-to-Plains. The Cruz- Luján legislation was a tremendous bipartisan victory for Texans and for our nation’s critical infrastructure. It will provide access to more efficient and effective transportation, cut costs and support our critical infrastructure. Today, I’m proud to introduce the next step in that journey, legislation to formally name Interstate 27, which will become a vital part of our national highway system for generations to come.”
Sen. Cornyn said:
“Our efforts to designate the Ports-to-Plains corridor as a future interstate will expand opportunity for farmers, ranchers, and producers across Texas. Formally naming the Texas and New Mexico segments Interstate 27 will close the loop on bringing this critical project to fruition, and I am grateful for Senator Cruz and Congressman Arrington’s partnership on this important designation.”
Sen. Luján said:
"I was proud to work together with Senator Cruz to designate a portion of the Ports-to-Plains Corridor as an addition to the interstate system last Congress. We are continuing to work together to support the development of this corridor in New Mexico and Texas. Our interstates are vital for New Mexico's economy and safe transportation, and I look forward to advancing this legislation."
Rep. Arrington said:
“The Port-to-Plains Corridor, which expands from Texas through the Heartland, serves as a critical tool for enhancing America’s agriculture and energy dominance. This legislation to number the Texas and New Mexico portions of the Corridor as Interstate Route 27 is one step closer to ensuring the nation's largest agricultural and energy production centers located in West Texas are more accessible to the rest of the country,”
Joe Kiely, Vice President of Operations for the Ports-to-Plains Alliance said:
"It’s an exciting day for the future of our interstate and I am thrilled to take the next steps to furthering this project to completion, ”said Lauren Garduno, president of the Ports-to-Plains Alliance. “By naming and numbering the interstate, the Department of Transportation is able to add signage along the corridor. I appreciate the efforts of Senators Cruz, Cornyn, and Luján on the introduction of S.992, which is critical to the development of future Interstate-27."
“Today is a monumental day for the Ports-to-Plains Alliance as we take the next steps in developing the future I-27,” said John Osborne, chairman of the Ports-to-Plains Alliance. “I’d like to express my appreciation to Senators Cruz, Cornyn, and Luján for introducing the legislation to move this project forward. By naming and numbering the interstate, the Ports-to-Plains Corridor will be critical infrastructure for the communities and industries utilizing the interstate throughout Texas and our heartland.”
In 2022, Sen. Cruz successfully included language in the fiscal year (FY) 2022 appropriations legislation to designate the portion of the Ports-to-Plains Corridor from Laredo, Texas, to Raton, New Mexico, as a future interstate route. This was an important step toward adding the route to the U.S. Interstate System. Though the language passed into law in 2022 will add key parts of the Ports-to-Plains Corridor to the Interstate System, it did not give the route an official future interstate route number. Additionally, for the two locations in Texas where the future interstate diverges, this new legislation would name them as I-227 for the current Routes 158 and 349 from Sterling City to Lamesa and as I-327 for the current Route 87 from Dumas to the Oklahoma border.
Read the bill text here.