CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — TxDOT is in Phase 5 of its $50 million project on State Highway 358, which has been underway since early 2018.
The project has been reversing ramps up and down the highway. And now, the same will be done to the eastbound Everhart Road exit.
What ramp reversals do is change exits to entrances and entrances to exits. Several on the westbound side of the highway have already been changed. The Everhart exit will be moved back, more west, to help with safety concerns.
"It’s so close to the intersection that they line up back onto the main lanes," said Rickey Dailey, Public Information Officer for the TxDOT Corpus Christi District. "That’s what we’re trying to prevent. Also, they give you a little more time to weave and change lanes as you’re either getting off the road or onto the main lanes."
Business owners in the area say they have grown accustomed to traffic congestion over the years.
"There’s always been congestion in this area," said Jesse Mendoza, owner of Comics Plus on Everhart Road. "We’ve been here about five years. Traffic seems to always back up in this intersection. I think that’ll help to relieve some of the pressure."
Yes, construction has affected businesses in the area.
Not only is TxDOT working on a project, but the City of Corpus Christi is also in the final stages of its reconstruction of Everhart. According to the city website the project was supposed to be completed in March.
"Well, there’s been a little bit of a slowdown with the construction going on, but as they moved along and progressed, its opened up," Mendoza said. "It's I think helping our business a little bit. I think in the end it will be a benefit for us."
Dailey said this next phase is going to take two months to complete. So now might be the time to think of a new way home, to Chick-Fil-A or to your favorite store in the area.
"With TxDOT's project, with the city’s project and these changes, that congestion is going to increase," said Dailey. "So, please if you can find an alternate route. If not, pack some patience and drive safe."
The exit ramp will close at 9 p.m. Wednesday and a temporary one will open at 6 a.m. Thursday.
The eastbound Weber Road entrance will also close temporarily.
The entire project is expected to be finished in the summer of 2022.