NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - The Texas Department of Transportation is approaching its busy season. Summer work schedules will pick up. A new area engineer will be leading the various maintenance and improvement projects for four counties.
TxDOT's new Nacogdoches area engineer in the Lufkin District is Kevin Buranakitipinyo.
Buranakitipinyo's name is long, like the area he supervises across the district.
"Here's Nacogdoches," Buranakitipinyo said. "This is where the area office is at. And then as you work east you've got Shelby, San Augustine, Sabine that are all out of this office. We're the only area office that has four counties."
Following a year in Amarillo, the engineer returns to East Texas where he served as project manager of the U.S. 59 South interchange project in Lufkin. Right now he's supervising 18 work projects.
"I have maintenance providers in every section that I keep in touch with, and it's my intention and my expectation to at least try to get to each section at least once a month, if not more," Buranakitipinyo said.
Major projects underway are the construction of Loop 500 in Center and the widening of State Highway 21 East in Nacogdoches County. San Augustine County has a traffic circle on the drawing board.
"We have a four-year plan and we will submit our needs and the maintenance guys will submit our needs to the district, and we'll look at each road and they'll look at each road and prioritize the most important needs," Buranakitipinyo said.
Along those lines, State Highway 225 was prioritized. Now a portion of improved roadway makes travel to Lake Nacogdoches safer.
Other roadways will receive improvements as district seal coating across the Lufkin District begins in June.
The former area engineer in the Nacogdoches office was Michael Lee. He is now serving as director of operation in TxDOT's Paris District.
TxDOT reminds all motorists as construction picks up to be sure and observe all warning signs and reduced speed limit signs for everyone's safety.