Face-lift for Main Street: Pedestrian Enhancement Report seeks to beautify city

SAN BENITO — Main Street will be receiving a makeover.

Main Street coordinator Bernardo Rodriguez submitted the Pedestrian Enhancement Report to the Texas Department of Transportation yesterday.

TxDOT has a project for Sam Houston Boulevard planned for fiscal year 2018 that includes a complete milling and overlay of the street.

The proposed report will add to that, if approved.

The report documents existing problems in the area and includes recommendations for improvement that would provide an aesthetically pleasing and easier access area.

The main objectives of the report are to improve pedestrian safety and connect important community destinations.

The proposal contains three parts that include fixing the access ways, adding crosswalks and a plan for landscape.

“We seek every opportunity to enhance and collaborate with any entity to better our city,” Rodriguez said.

According to the report, side access streets are in a deteriorated state due to drainage runoff.

Rodriguez said that runoff water often stays on the edges and deteriorates the street.

“Water is a big enemy of streets,” Rodriguez said.

The city is requesting the overlay project include those access streets by 25 feet.

The second component is the addition of crosswalks.

Rodriguez said pedestrian crosswalks could potentially be used for a historical walking tour that would enhance the historic culture and develop an economic effect.

The proposed crosswalk would start at the Veterans War Memorial where people could park and proceed on a tour.

The final component is a plan for landscape at the intersection of Expressway 77 and SH 345.

The report states the intersection is a centerpiece entrance into the city and serves as an aesthetic window into the community.

The request is to add trees and foliage to match the culture and economic development plans for the future.

Rodriguez said he wants to create a city that attracts more tourists.

What are the needs?

The proposed Pedestrian Enhancement Report asks for three things.

Fix 25 feet at the side access streets

Add crosswalks

Add foliage, trees at the entrance of Expressway 77 and SH 345