Longview Loop 281 corridor study to provide long-term assessment of transportation needs

Planning for smooth traffic routes is a topic to be addressed at tonight’s Longview City Council meeting in the form of a Loop 281 corridor study and an ordinan
Published: Apr. 13, 2023 at 3:56 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 13, 2023 at 9:58 PM CDT
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LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - All East Texas drivers want smooth traffic routes, but getting that requires some planning.

The Longview Metropolitan Planning Organization has conducted a corridor study of East Loop 281, between Tryon Road and Page Road/Delia Drive, to address long-term growth and critical intersections at Tryon Road, Hollybrook Drive, Alpine Road and Page Road/Delia Drive.

The Longview City Council unanimously agreed on Thursday night to use the study as its guide in planning going forward. The study is essentially “a foundational document to be used going forward as we go out for grants, plan projects, etc. over the next 25 years,” Longview PIO Richard Yeakley said.

The study was conducted by Longview MPO.

“My job is to forecast transportation improvements over the next 25 years. We studied Loop 281, and we basically identified what sort of improvements should happen to keep up trends of the development going on in that area,” said Bryan McBride, Longview MPO director.

But there are variables connected to the study that are problematic.

A number of businesses, schools, churches and residents fall inside the corridor area, and any construction is seen as a hindrance to people’s lives and livelihoods.

“It’s not necessarily cutting people off, it’s being a guide for that area, how to develop that area in the most efficient way. It’s more ‘let’s make it safe access across the area,’” McBride says.

And the city has made the study well-known to Longview residents.

“So there were a couple of public meetings that the public was invited to, shared through all the city’s communication channels; in addition, they reached out to property owners along the corridor,” said Yeakley.

McBride says it’s a long-term study only.

“It’s more of a conceptual idea of how could we improve this area,” he says.

Yeakley added that the study being approved for use by the City does not indicate that work is beginning immediately on these projects, simply that when they are ready to begin, the plan is ready for them to refer to.