TxDOT seeking public comment about South Broadway changes

TxDOT seeking public comment about South Broadway changes

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The Texas Department of Transportation is looking to help make traveling easier for travelers in Tyler.

Street lights and traffic, that's how some Tyler residents would describe South Broadway.

"The congestion starts at about the toll road and it's pretty heavily congested and goes most days to the Loop 323," Tyler native Jerry Waldrup said.

In 2017, South Broadway from Loop 323 to Toll 49 was ranked the 67th most congested roadway in Texas. Now TxDOT is conducting a study on ways to improve the mobility of the five-mile stretch.

This week, the public will get a chance to express any concerns or suggestions on how to improve the road. Many residents already expressed their concerns to KLTV.

"It was a bad idea to build up the center median," Waldrup said. "Before you could pull in anywhere in the center and now you have to go all the way to the turning areas."

"To me, I think they should add overpasses, because it's pretty dangerous trying to cross the road," South Broadway driver William Wright said.

Improving the road could mean widening the road to make additional lanes, adding overpasses and ramps at intersections or more.

Some people we spoke with off camera say expanding the road will only allow for drivers to be more reckless, while others thing it could be a good thing.

"Look at all the congestion that's taken care of by putting the overpass on 344," Wright said. "People are able to go across traffic a whole lot easier."

This is only the first step in making changes to the road. The study will begin in November and be finalized in June of 2019.

However, an environmental study and design finalizations will need to be made before construction will start. Waldrup says even though changes need to be made, he not looking forward to the construction.

"It would be nice if they could do it with the least amount of impact to the current traffic," Waldrup said.

According to a TxDOT timeline, it could be another eight years before construction begins.

The public is invited to share their comments with staff from TxDOT and the City of Tyler about South Broadway on Tuesday, July 17 from 5 – 7 p.m. at the First Christian Church.

Copyright 2018 KLTV. All rights reserved.