TxDOT considers turning Highway 59 into interstate

TxDOT looking for feedback on Hwy. 59 expansion
Updated: Aug. 10, 2018 at 2:49 PM CDT
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QUEEN CITY, TX (KSLA) - Big changes could be coming for drivers in east Texas as authorities look to change U.S. Highway 59, the road that leads motorists in Queen City to Texarkana.

According to the Texas Department of Transportation, the plan would be to upgrade the road to an interstate. However, TxDOT is looking for public input to make that happen.

Friday, August 10 is the last day the department will be accepting feedback from the community. To give your feedback or read more on the project, click HERE.

"A lot of people passing by notice the mannequin outside and they're going to stop and check us out," said Mary Moore, a Texarkana business owner.

For the last six years, Moore has been relying on the roadway to drive customers to her store. She fears that if it becomes an interstate her livelihood will ultimately be affected.

"If it's going to kick me off the side of the road, then no I'm not for it all, but if it's going to bring more traffic through and help the businesses in this location, then I'm all for it," Moore said.

Marcus Sandifer, Texarkana's public relations officer, says the department is looking for feedback from residents such as Moore as part of a study to find out if the change will help more than it hurts.

"Anytime you have a major widening of highway or you put a new highway on a new construction site then it's going to impact a lot of people," Sandifer said. "We just want to make sure that people have an opportunity and give their opinions on the project," he said.

In July, the department held two open houses for the public. Officials plan to collect all the feedback given and present it to an engineering firm taking part in a study.

If most of the feedback is positive, officials will move forward with more studies and eventually, U.S Highway 59 could evolve into an interstate.

Moore would be open to selling her business for the project, right now she's not looking to move.

"I've been here a long time and I like this spot," Moore said.

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