LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – Remember the saying, you don't know what you have until it's gone? Well, for nearly two years, the Tulane Drive overpass has been out of order. For Lufkin driver Rachael Luna, missing the bridge is an understatement.
"I did not think I could miss a bridge, but I definitely missed the bridge," said Luna.
"I love the bridge. I mean I love the bridge," said Christy Shaw, Lufkin driver.
Shaw delivers pizzas for a living. For her, Thursday morning's ribbon cutting means more cash in her pocket. She said time is money.
"It's cut my delivery time in half on every delivery I have to go on that side," said Shaw.
She said less headache for drivers is more business for surrounding shops.
"Our customers will be more happy because we can get it there a lot quicker when they want it there and it brings more people over here, even for carryout," she said.
Resident Wade Anders said before the bridge, going to his favorite sub shop was a nightmare.
"Oh , yeah, just a pain in the butt you got to go around the world to get to wherever you're going," he said.
Thursday the bridge was jammed with happy drivers, able to get to where they want to go quicker.
"It was super, you just get off that exit and zip right across here. I mean I'm glad they finally got it back up," said Anders.
For Terrie Henson, it's an easier route to work.
"I used to have to drive across the mall parking lot to get to work!" she said.
The bridge...is a dream come true for drivers.
"I love the bridge dude!" said Wade.
According to TxDOT spokeswoman Kathi White, all that is left of the project is final paving in locations such as Loop 287 and Whitehouse Drive and landscaping and painting that will go on through much of the summer.