Weslaco residents voice concerns over road widening project

1 year 1 month 1 week ago Thursday, October 20 2022 Oct 20, 2022 October 20, 2022 9:32 AM October 20, 2022 in News - Local

Residents in Weslaco voiced their concerns with a proposed project Wednesday night. 

Around 40 residents showed up to a meeting at Mario Ybarra Elementary school. County leaders say the proposed project is supposed to help current traffic issues. 

Many residents think otherwise. 

"We're gonna have an increased traffic area," Weslaco resident Denise Ortiz said. "I have four small children, so right now as it is, traffic is kind of fast moving in that area."

Ortiz has lived on Mile 10 north for more than ten years. She says the proposed multi-million dollar plan to increase Mile 10 north from two lanes to four could cause chaos on the road.

"How fast these cars are going to be passing by in front of our home, as it is, they already go by pretty fast," Ortiz said. So that would be one of the main concerns."

Residents also voiced their concerns with the impact it could have on nearby schools.

"There's several schools on the way as you head to work or head home," a Weslaco resident said. "And it's always difficult going around traffic at the school intersections."

Channel 5 drove by one of those schools on Mile 10. Parents were parked in the grass, so drivers can get around them. 

"People are zooming by so fast that it moves my vehicle, like they're going too fast for a school speed limit," Weslaco parent Vanessa Lopez said. "If there were lanes enough for us safely waiting for our kids, the cars would go by without a problem."

The proposed project stretches for three miles along Mile 10 north. It starts at Mile 6 west and ends at FM 1015. 

In addition to the four lanes, the plan will also include a center turning lane, a shared path for pedestrians and bicyclists, including a sidewalk.

The plan also calls for the one-mile stretch on Mile 10 north between Mile 4 west and FM 1015 to be elevated to help deal with flooding. 

"We provide underground drainage, so it will capture that water and then outflow it to a drain that we're going to improve," Hidalgo County Commissioner Precinct 1 David Fuentes said. 

If approved, the project will require 32 acres of new right of way. No residential or business relocations are expected. 

Weslaco residents who missed the meeting can still voice their concerns and comments until Nov. 3. 

For more information, visit the Hidalgo County website or the TXDOT website. 

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