City Council members shared their concerns about a few intersections and projects when they got their first look at the proposed improvements on Glade Road.
City Council reviewed the plans for the four-mile stretch of Glade Road at a March 3 worksession.
“Glade Road is one of our east-west gateways,” Mayor David Kelly said. “It is the gateway to our commercial district.
“Hopefully we can provide a beautiful entryway to the city.”
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The project runs from just east of Precinct Line Road to Heritage Avenue — just west of Texas 121 — and is flanked by high-end residential neighborhoods, pasture-like acreage and retail developments.
The mostly two-lane roadway is in need of repairs, and the city decided to look at also improving the road that also gets backed up at several intersections.
Chad Gartner, TranSystems project manager and designer, showed Council the design ideas that were created with public involvement. Last year, the project group hosted two public meetings to gather public feedback.
Because the roadway serves a variety of uses, designers broke the project into four sections to best address unique needs.
While it will remain a two-lane roadway, changes will include the introduction of continuous left-turn lanes, left-turn lanes where warranted and medians with left turn lanes.
Intersections will feature the more drastic changes, including a few roundabouts.
The Bluebonnet intersection will be lowered by 5 to 6 feet, and will feature only stop signs on Bluebonnet Road.
Kelly said that should help prevent drivers from using the road as a cut through.
The Council was interested in seeing a way to connect Bedford Road to Thompson Terrace.
“Thompson Terrace is kind of the backside of our commercial development,” Councilman Jody Short said. “My vision would be Bedford line up with Thompson.”
Gartner said the design team did not pursue that idea because it would require obtaining more right of way, but Mayor Pro Tem Mike Taylor said the project should be a long-term commitment.
“If this is a problem we don't solve today, then the future leadership and citizens will have to deal with it in much greater pain that we have to today,” he said. “I don’t want to tell citizens that we put a $3 million Band-aid on a $4 million project.”
The proposed changes carry an estimated price tag of $17.5 million over seven years through 2020. The city plans to pay for the project without debt or increasing taxes.
City spokeswoman Mona Gandy said a majority of funding will come through the TIF, but the city will also use parameter fees and impact fees.
The Council also wanted to make sure to prioritize the project’s phasing.
Taylor said the most concern was from Texas 26 to Bluebonnet Road.
“Quite honestly, if that’s all the money I had, that’s where I’d do it,” he said.
The Council was split on what type of drainage the roadway would feature, curb-and-gutter or a ribbon curb, in terms of maintaining a rural feel.
“If we do this right, Glade can be one of the nicest roads in the country,” Councilman Stan Hall said.
The project team will return to Council with amendments in 30-45 days, but an official date has not yet been set.