The prayers of the people living on Bolivar Peninsula have been answered in the form of funding for a roadway that is the only overland evacuation route off the Bolivar Peninsula.

The Texas Department of Transportation has officially approved spending the $14 million needed to permanently repair a problematic area of Highway 87 near High Island. The road occasionally gets inundated and shut down during high tide and severe weather events.

The issue of water, sand and debris covering the road has become more severe in recent years, officials say.

“When this portion of the highway is impassable, it creates a danger for those living on the peninsula and first responders,” Galveston County Commissioner Ryan Dennard said. “I know how important this project is and I’m thrilled that the State of Texas has made this substantial financial commitment to solve this problem.”

TxDOT hired Houston-based LJA Engineering to do a detailed study of the road conditions and long-term solutions. The study suggested raising portions of the highway up to 7.5 feet, from the corner of SH 124 and SH 87 to Rollover Pass. The project may also include placing rocks on the beach itself, elevating beach access crossings and adding nourishment.

Construction is scheduled to start next year.