HARLINGEN, TX – The Port of Harlingen began preliminary work for five projects for upgrades and construction as part of the Rider 38 Grant Program.

In May 2020, the Port was awarded $5.262 million by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) Rider 38 Grant for transportation improvement and service expansion. Grant money, along with $1.75 million in matching funds (project total cost $6.8 million), will create more truck queuing areas along Port and Cemetery Rd., which a portion will also function as a breakbulk cargo laydown yard, and road expansion and refortification on Port Rd and Robles Rd.

“These projects not only bring us to some milestones on our Master Plan, but also opens the door to more opportunities in diversifying cargo and the Ports ability to handle the inevitable increase in truck traffic,” said Port Board Chair Alan Johnson.

Rider 38, the most recent round of funding provided by the Texas Legislature, was approved by the Texas Transportation Commission May 28th totaling $40 million for select port projects statewide. The last three sessions have included budget riders in the General Appropriations Act that authorizes the use of $100 million for projects to improve access to maritime ports. These funds come from the Texas Mobility Fund, or other eligible sources. All projects that receive funding are selected by the Port Authority Advisory Committee (PAAC) and approved by the Texas Transportation Commission.

The Port of Harlingen previously received $7.8 million through the Rider 45 Grant in 2017 that led to the rebuild and resurfacing of Port and Cemetery Roads, as well as the expansion of the intersection of Port Rd. And FM 106 creating a safer roadway for Port and regular traffic.

“Since 2017, the Port has seen a 43% increase in tonnage due in large part to the increase in petroleum coming in and out of the Port,” Port Director Walker Smith said. “This not only means an increase in barge traffic but also trucks used for export. We would not have been able to handle the rate of growth we have without essential maintenance and upgrades to our roads.”

Projects associated with Rider 38 are set to be completed by the first quarter of 2022.

For more information, contact Amy Lynch, Director of Public Relations and Marketing, at (956) 244-7883 or at amy@portofharlingen.com. You can also visit The Port of Harlingen online at www.portofharlingen.com


  1. Between FM106 & Cemetery Rd.: Resurfacing, Expansion
  2. Between FM106 & Cemetery Rd.: Queuing Area
  3. Port Rd.: Resurfacing
  4. Port Rd. Near Dock: Resurfacing, Expansion, Truck Queuing Area/Laydown Yard
  5. Robles Rd.: Resurfacing, Expansion
  6. Port Rd. North Bound- Expansion, Resurfacing