West Texas Traffic Worsening 07/13/12
CBS 7 News
July 13, 2012
Permian Basin, TX - As the population soars, traffic is getting noticeably worse. In fact City Officials in Midland and Odessa say this is the most congested our roads have ever been.
"Our streets were not developed for this amount of traffic," said Mayor Larry Melton, City of Odessa.
More cars are making their way into the Permian Basin, causing a spike in traffic our roads can't handle.
“About 15 to 20 percent more cars are on our roads,” said Gary Saunders, Midland Transportation Manager.
Midland Transportation Manager Gary Saunders says he has to conduct traffic studies regularly.
"In a normal growth rate, you can do that annually but in the growth we're experiencing, we can't do that so we gotta continuously check those things because our traffic is changing so quickly," said Saunders.
This has City officials from both Midland and Odessa exploring all options, including changing traffic light times and expanding roads to accommodate future growth.
"Some roadways will be expanded to a certain point where growth is going also expanding some arterials," said Saunders.
But as cities work through growing pains, leaders are encouraging you to be patient and cautious on the roads.
"What I gotta say is just be better drivers, safer and don't text and drive," said Mayor Wes Perry, City of Midland.
"If you gotta be somewhere at a specific time, start early, take your time, don't jeopardize your life or the person coming toward you," said Mayor Melton.