CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — People who live on Ennis Joslin Road in between South Padre Island Drive and Ocean Drive are hopeful that a new traffic signal that the city activated Wednesday will cut down on the number of speeding drivers and wrecks.
"I think it's extremely unsafe," Corpus Christi resident Kathleen Rippert said of that strecth of road.
Rippert lives at the La Joya apartment complex at the corner of Ennis Joslin and McArdle Road where the new traffic signal is. She thinks it will make driving safer in that area that city traffic engineers estimate sees 25,000 cars and trucks every day.
"I think it's necessary," Rippert said. "I'm excited about it. I think it will prevent a lot of stuff. I'm sure a lot of people will get tickets in the beginning, because they're used to it not being like that. But I think it will be safer."
A KRIS 6 report from 2017 found that a motorcycle police officer patrolling this area stopped 21 drivers and wrote eight of them speeding tickets in less than an hour.
The new traffic signal will only flash yellow and red for a few days, so drivers can get used to its existence. A second new traffic signal at McArdle and Nile Drive began normal operations today. Combined they're part of the city's growth plans.
"Those were identified through our traffic counts to determine the need for signals because of back-ups and congestion in the area," Corpus Christi Director of Street Operations Albert Quintanilla said. "We're installing traffic signals to help traffic flow through those intersections safer and smoother."
The two new traffic signals are the first of nine from a bond that voters approved in 2014. City and Texas Department of Transportation funds are paying for them.