Contact: Jennifer Wright
Phone: (915) 790-4340
Date: March 9, 2018
Drivers in Northeast El Paso should be prepared for the addition of traffic signals at the intersections of Mesquite Hill Drive and Gateway North and Mesquite Hill Drive and Gateway South. The lights were installed this week and are currently in a standard testing phase flashing red at Mesquite Hill Drive and yellow on the gateways. The lights will be fully operational starting Monday, March 12.
The intersection previously had a stop sign but was reconfigured after TxDOT conducted a study on the area. In 2016, the intersection was the site of six crashes and no fatalities. In 2017, there were 11 crashes and two fatalities – one on September 27 and the other on December 27.
In addition to the installation of traffic signals in the area, flashing signs were installed ahead of the signals to alert drivers and help them acclimate to the change.
“While we hope the addition of this traffic signal increases safety in the area, we can’t emphasize enough the need for drivers to obey traffic laws, especially speed limits and traffic signs and signals,” said TxDOT District Engineer Bob Bielek. “The majority of crashes occur as a result of failure to control speed, driver inattention, or a combination of both.”
TxDOT and the city of El Paso collaborated on the installation of the lights and shared resources to complete the project.
"We thank the residents of Mesquite Hills and TxDOT for their commitment to keeping our community safe," said city representative Sam Morgan, District 4.
TxDOT follows a process for the installation of traffic signals. When a request for a new traffic signal on the state highway system is received, the local district office conducts an engineering and traffic study of the proposed location. To justify a new signal, traffic conditions must meet at least one of nine minimum standards, also known as “warrants.” In the case for Mesquite Hill Drive, it was the number of crashes relative to the traffic volumes that led to the stoplight.
To find out more about the process: https://www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/division/traffic/traffic-signals/evaluation-traffic-signals.html
The Texas Department of Transportation is responsible for maintaining 80,000 miles of road and for supporting aviation, rail, and public transportation across the state. Through collaboration and leadership, we deliver a safe, reliable, and integrated transportation system that enables the movement of people and goods. Find out more at TxDOT.gov. "Like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.