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Overlapping construction projects in West El Paso

abc-seven staying on top of the story that seemingly gets worse and more frustrating, day by day. overlapping construction projects in west el paso. was there any other way to get the work done? that’s what we are asking tonight following the closure of paisano from executive to sunland park … … which until last sunday … was an alternate route for drivers who are now caught in i-10 gridlock on a daily basis. and to add to the problems, the city’s street car project is closing some of the only other roads drivers can use to avoid the two highway projects. southbound lanes of oregon street between cincinnati and university are closed for the next two months! so that makes three big projects all in the same area of el paso. many of you who are affected are calling it ridiculous. that’s why we’re looking into why the projects are all happening at once. abc-7’s josie ortegon is live tonight with what she learned. rick, estela. with a section of paisano closed monday, the logical route would be i-10. but lanes closed around executive center caused a major backup–forcing drivers to use mesa as a detour. …but they’re running into problems there too: pkg: “…when we try to put all th traffic onto mesa, it’s really difficult not to have congestion.” congestion that has west el paso drivers frustrated–especial ly when their detour includes running into even more constrction. crews are working on the el paso streetcar project. spokesman martin bartlett says working around utep’s school schedule made the most sense. “everybody is on schedule and wants to get the project they’re responsible for, completed.” while it’s all happening at what feels like an inconvenient time, tx-dot district engineer, bob bielek says it could be even worse worse– txdot had two options–work on the go-10 and border west expressway projects separately, or at the same time. since the two interconnect near paisano–he says it’s better to get the work done now. “we would open 20-50 million dollars it would be very difficult to have good connections in place and would subject the public to 7-8 years to this kind of situation instead of 3 1/2 to 4 years.” and that’s what bielick says tops the list when considering some of the pros to constuction. gfx: pro’s & con’s ..shorter construction time ..lower pricetag ..and better longterm traffic management. drivers already know the cons … …more congestion …fewer alternative routes …and longer commute. “the more importan issue as to why we’re doing both at the same time is simply the connection and the fact that we can cut the public’s pain from 7-8 years to 3 1/2 to 4 years. the streetcar construction will wrap up in mid- august before school starts. construction around paisano will last roughly 8 months. tex-dot is completely shutting down i-10 east tonight from hunter to zaragoza! it’ll

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