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Council members divided over Rodd Field extension plan

Posted at 1:46 PM, Aug 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-03 19:49:36-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — One of the projects in the city’s 2020 bond proposal has a pair of city council members agreeing to disagree.

If voters approve the bond, Rodd Field Road, which ends at Yorktown Boulevard, would be extended to Adler. District 5 City Councilman Gil Hernandez calls the project the next step toward a regional parkway.

“We’ve got to think about what’s going to happen 10, 15, 20 years from now, and mobility for all this area,” said Hernandez.

The plan is to eventually connect Rodd Field to the Crosstown Expressway. Hernandez said he’s pushed for the project because the south side is growing and needs more roads.

“At some point, this whole area that's green field is going to be developed with homes or businesses,” he said. “This corner right here (Rodd Field and Yorktown) is probably going to be a small shopping center.”

However, the $4.8 million Rodd Field project is why District 4 City Councilman Greg Smith voted against the entire bond package.

“In that area, we have a highly traveled, very dangerous road: Yorktown,” he said.

Smith believes development along Yorktown, including the new Del Mar Southside Campus, makes that road more of a priority than Rodd Field.

“Currently, there are five subdivisions located on that dangerous section of (Yorktown),” he said. “I thought that money would be much better spent on improving that dangerous area of Yorktown.”

However, Hernandez said it makes more sense to extend Rodd Field first.

“If you put construction on Yorktown, that makes it a congestion nightmare the whole way,” he said.

Right now, the only way onto Yorktown from the south is through the Rancho Vista development. Hernandez said he also supports expanding and improving Yorktown, but believes tackling Rodd Field first will save drivers headaches once Yorktown work starts.

“If you build Rodd Field first, you give them a second exit to where they can have a protected left turn at (Rodd Field and Yorktown),” Hernandez said.

There currently is no timetable for construction, other than it's part of the city’s 10-year plan. Passing the bond could make it happen sooner, rather than later.

The bond proposal also includes money for design work on Yorktown from Rodd Field to the Oso Creek Bridge.