DENTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – At issue: Hickory Creek Road, just south of city limits; particularly, the stretch south of FM 1830 that winds along the actual creek. Three lives have been lost there in less than two years, including two brothers in January. Diego and Daniel Rivera were found dead inside a car submerged in the creek.
“And we had someone else lose their life last year, which really brought the issue of accelerating some kind of solution to the forefront,” said City Engineer Todd Estes.
The plan has a temporary and long term solution. For the next thirty days or so – Hickory Creek Road is closed. Crews are striping the road, putting in reflectors, signage and ultimately a guardrail. It’s all meant to protect drivers and passengers from the winding conditions.
“The long term fix is to take the bends completely out of the roadway and go straight. It means we are going to construct potentially two very long bridges, about 3,000 feet of bridge to get over the creek and then tie it back in to 1830 on the west side.”
Today the Denton City Council approved $3.3 million for engineers to begin designing a new stretch of road; specifically, from 2181 to Riverpass. Ultimately, the hope is it will meet the two bridges and extend to I-35.
“What I can say to the community is, we’ve always been listening to the concerns,” Denton Mayor Chris Watts said. “Here we’ve had a couple horrific accidents. And it just was time that we needed to find a way to work together with the county and the city.”
According to the Estes, the city engineer, the long term solution is going to be completed until 2022 or 2023, and delays are possible.
The project will cost upwards of $40 million.