By Kathi Bliss
During a comparatively calm meeting of the Caldwell County Commissioners Court on Monday morning, Commissioners and the gallery engaged in lively discussion about two proposed road projects, both of which are intended to increase safety of Caldwell County drivers and residents.
The first project is the dead-ending of County Road 176, which joins with FM 1854 at the intersection of Highway 21 in Mustang Ridge. The intersection, which has been the site of a number of fatal and near-fatal accidents over the years, is being eyed as a potential location for a stop-light to be installed by the Texas Department of Transportation.
However, according to TxDOT regulations, traffic lights cannot be installed at five-way intersections, therefore creating the need for CR176 to come to a dead end before it reaches FM 1854.
After questions about how the change would be executed and what means of direction and signage would be most appropriate for Caldwell County, it was noted that the intersection is actually within the Mustang Ridge City Limits.
Therefore, as the project goes forward, one of the first steps will be discussion with the Mustang Ridge City Council to determine the best way to proceed.
In a similar discussion, the residents of Meadow Lane in Martindale have requested that either speed bumps or road humps be installed in their neighborhood, in an effort to control the traffic that will soon be created when a new “tubing” operation opens on the San Marcos River next year.
The new business, neighbors on Meadow Lane (CR69) said, would increase traffic in their neighborhood, particularly afternoon and evening traffic as customers who may have been drinking while they float the river leave the area.
Road humps, they said, would be a viable means to keep their speed lower, and help control the safety in the area.
After some discussion about what type of traffic control apparatus would be most appropriate and how the project would be funded, the Commissioners agreed to move forward with the project and seek bids on what County Engineer Bill Gardner called “traffic cushions.”
The owner of the “tubing business” is said to be willing to contribute up to $3,000 toward the project.
In other business, the Commissioners briefly discussed budget amendments needed to finalize last fiscal year’s budget. Among those amendments are an $815,000 adjustment to revenues and a $446,000 adjustment to expenditures, resulting in a net increase of $1.2 million in county funds.
The amendments, according to County Auditor Larry Roberson, are part of the natural course of county business, when expenses run below budget and revenue collections exceed budgeted expectations.
The Caldwell County Commissioners Court meets on the second, third and fourth Monday of each month at 9 a.m. in the Training and Conference Room at the L.W. Scott Annex in Lockhart. The meetings are open to the public and interested stakeholders are encouraged to attend.