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Traffic study could improve East Side intersections

Updated: Friday, March 7 2014, 11:46 AM MST
Traffic study could improve East Side intersections story image

By: Stacey Welsh
EL PASO, Texas -- East Side drivers could soon see some relief behind the wheel. The El Paso City Council approved a program to improve more than 100 traffic signals in intersections on the East Side.

"Especially because of all the construction, it's always backed up over there. It takes longer to get through where you need to go to," central El Paso resident Ruth Villalba said.

The city contracted a firm called Savant Group, Inc. to conduct the Far East Signal Synchronization study. The project's boundaries are from Interstate 10 to the south, Yarbrough to the west, Edgemere to the north and North Zaragoza to the east.

"It's always good to update traffic signal timing as more people move into the area and as more businesses develop and open up. The pattern has changed, so we need to update the timing," El Paso Transporation Director Ted Marquez said.

Marquez said the study will look into how wait times can be improved. That includes wait times for pedestrian crossings and left turns.

Joe Winston said he's been visiting El Paso for a few days, and already noticed traffic congestion and longer wait times than he is used to. He said that's especially true for the intersection of North Zaragoza and George Dieter Drive.

"I waited at least a good five or ten minutes. You have to be really careful with this intersection," Winston said.

Villalba also said longer waits could cost drivers.

"The lights just change too quickly. I always see the lights flashing from the cameras giving people tickets. I think it's just so congested there," Villalba said.

Marquez said the city will make changes to traffic signals as the study goes on, and make adjustments as needed.

Traffic study could improve East Side intersections
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