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Meeting to discuss Houghton Road safety

Posted at 10:13 PM, Feb 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-03 00:13:34-05

A roughly seven mile section of Houghton Rd. between I-10 and Sahuarita Rd. was the topic of discussion as around 100 residents met with community officials at Andrada Polytechnic High School Thursday night. In light of car accidents -- one of them leaving a teenager dead -- many people are concerned about the safety of the road. 

"It is not something I would want my children driving on, on a regular basis," Edward Buster said about this section of Houghton. He has five children, one of whom attends a high school that sits on the road. He explained it's time to improve road, and he hopes to see it shift to a four lane road. At the moment, there are two-lane sections and three-lane sections.

"It's about the condition of the road," he said. "It's a two lane road with almost 12,000 individuals driving on it each and every day."

Plenty of questions for the various officials at the meeting. One of the biggest issues facing road improvement? Funding, according to Priscilla Cornelio, Director of the Pima County Department of Transportation.

"Our estimate is about ten million dollars per mile for a four lane road," she said. "Which would be about 90 million dollars."

Pima County Sheriff's Department at the meeting, explaining it made a lot of contacts with drivers on this specific stretch of road in 2016. Many of those contacts included speeding issues, tailgating, and people passing drivers in no passing zones. 

Since 2014, Tucson Police and the Pima County Sheriff's Department report responding to 58 accidents on this part of the road. The first one in 2017, responsible for the death of a teenager. 

Between the conditions of the road and drivers acting recklessly, Buster and many of the people at the meeting hope to see change soon.