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What Is This Thing?


Every time I drive down LBJ Freeway, I wonder about the large structure being built on the northwest corner of Webb Chapel Road and the highway also known as I-635. It’s about four stories tall and as long as a city block, and it apparently has no internal bones, so it looks like a hangar for the Mountain of Judgment. But it seems highly unlikely that anyone would store a vehicle from Jack Kirby’s Fourth World along a Dallas highway; more reporting would be needed.

The FAQ section of the LBJ Express website includes this two-part question: “TxDOT recently demolished several buildings at I-635 and Josey. Why and what will happen to this land?” The answer:

An Atmos natural gas line relocation has been completed at the location of 2925, 2949 and 2995 LBJ Freeway. The gas line easement now lies near where those buildings were located. Please check with Atmos as to the availability of the land within the easement.

So I checked with Atmos about the mysterious structure within the easement. No answer. I reached out to the Texas Department of Transportation. Dunno. Finally, I was put in touch with Andy Rittler, the corporate affairs manager for the LBJ Express Project, who said:

This is a pre-fabrication facility for the construction of the T-shaped structure that sit on top of the columns. These are called bent caps. This is a temporary facility that will be dismantled once the project is completed.

So now you know. And knowing is half the battle.

  • Marcus

    You just crushed my dreams that it was going to be a space port.

  • Jeff

    I’ve heard a couple of suggestions that it could be a storage facility for the machine that will be digging the 635 tunnels.

  • Jason

    The building is an on site concrete beam plant for the construction on the hundreds of beams to be used in the construction of bridges for the LBJ Express project.

  • Wes Mantooth

    Given its size and location, I figured it’s a hangar for the drone air force that Farmer’s Branch has secreted away in its black budget for 2014. But “concrete beam plant” is a pretty good cover story.

  • Jeff

    Thanks for the update. Kinda disappointed, though. I was hoping for some Tim/Zac digging machine high jinks a la “Ocean’s 13.”

  • ernest t bass

    Looks like Mike Miles’ memorial tribute to Jennifer Sprague.

  • Neal K

    You’re thinking of the 60 foot statue of Lloyd Dobler holding a boom box over his head, to be constructed later this year at taxpayer expense.

  • Bill Lovell

    I’ve been wondering about this strange structure alongside Interstate 635 at Webb Chapel Rd in North Dallas.