Residents Say Their Road Poses A Safety Hazard - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

2/6/06-Smith County

Residents Say Their Road Poses A Safety Hazard

The health and safety of some Smith County residents are at risk.  County engineer Bill Bala says they live in an area where a deteriorating road is an accident waiting to happen. The residents live in the Pecan Estates subdivision at the end of County Road 3180. That's between FM 14 and Lavender Road just outside Loop 323.

Bala says because Pecan Estates is an "illegal subdivision", the responsibility to repair it is that of the developer. This morning County Commissioners discussed the matter. There could be a long road ahead before residents see anything done.

The 150 residents living in Pecan Estates have had to endure some tough living conditions because of their road. Garbage trucks, mail delivery and school buses have stopped traveling through the area. Guillermo Garnica says the school bus will not even pick up his disabled child. "I've been living here two years and it's never been in here. I've always had to take her approximately a quarter of a mile from here," says Garnica.

This morning, Bala brought the issue before Smith County commissioners. Bala says because the developer never filed the proper paper work with the county, the area is considered an "illegal subdivision." Because of that, the county can't make any repairs until that's taken care of.

In the end, the court decided to "table" the matter and put a letter together informing the developer of the situation. Bala says the county has tried to contact the developer regarding the matter four times in the past.

KLTV 7 News contacted the developer of Pecan Estates, who declined an on-camera interview. He told us he does not own any land at the site any more. So, he says the responsibility of fixing the road, falls on the residents of Pecan Estates.

Bala says there are about 24 illegal subdivisions that he knows of in Smith County. He says there are about 1,000 people living in those unplatted areas.

Oralia Ortega, reporting.

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