LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - By Holley Nees - email
LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - In an effort to relieve traffic congestion near three Lufkin schools, the city council approved contracts for reconstruction of Sayers Street and Fuller Springs Drive.
According to Deputy City Manager Keith Wright, the projects will involve road widening, re-paving and other improvements.
At the council meeting, members approved a $144,530 contract on Sayers Street, which is adjacent to Brandon Elementary, and a $190,700 contract on Fuller Springs Drive, adjacent to Burley Primary and Slack Elementary.
According to a March KTRE report, parents expressed frustration at the congested traffic around Fuller Springs Drive, after the opening of Burley Primary.
Wright said tonight's meeting is to pre-fund some of the engineering so the contractors are ready to bid on the project as soon as possible.
Among neighbors it's no question traffic on Fuller Springs Drive is a problem during the school year.
"I don't have words to explain it," Fullers Springs Drive resident John Rawls said. "They come in and park in the road and it's bad."
Wright says the plan is to make Fuller Springs Drive wider with a section for a third lane in some areas for drivers that need to access the school.
"I'm for what will help the school traffic problem, but if it's going to be widened very much, I'm definitely against it because I have a concreted driveway," Rawls said.
Neighbors say although they want to do what's best for the students, they want to make sure the city has explored all options before construction starts.
"I think if it's needed, it should be done, but I think it should be done properly, I think they should come in and ask us how we feel about it and if our land is taken, we should be compensated for it," Fuller Springs Drive resident Bill Poland said.
The city says there should be enough right-of-way that they won't need to take anyone's land and they will fix residents' driveways. Some are on-board and are just excited at the thought of less traffic.
"I think they should widen the roads because the traffic after school hours is terrible," Fuller Springs Drive resident Damion Hood said. "It's just lined up all down there."
But these neighbors won't see any of those changes by the time school starts in the fall.