Beaumont plans to build new road leading to mall

If you like to get your last minute holiday shopping done at Parkdale Mall in Beaumont, some traffic relief may be on the least in 2014.

The city of Beaumont plans to build a new road that would help open 500 acres of land up to development. The new road will be called Northwest Parkway, and will link North Major Drive and Folsom Drive to Parkdale Mall.

12 News spoke with area businesses about how holiday traffic affects them.

The traffic in front of Magic Carwash on Eastex Freeway by Parkdale Mall is at an ideal pace for owner Rory Prince.

"Then, during the holidays when everyone's excited about getting to the mall it can get really congested," Prince says.

Those who shop at the mall on a regular basis can vouch for that.
One mall shopper said, "Around Christmastime it's even worse because you have people trying to make it here to do their shopping, as opposed to doing it online, and it's absolutely, astronomically bad."

Regarding traffic, Prince told us, "You would think that it would affect us in a positive way because we have more traffic coming by, but actually it impacts us negatively because people know that the exits are packed, therefore they don't want to go through that hassle."

Prince says during the holiday season traffic is so bad that cars are backed up starting at the Dowlen Road stoplight reaching all the way to the exit.

But not every business in the area thinks the congestion hurts.

"When people are stopped there, they're looking around at surrounding businesses, taking up time until the light turns green so it's not bad and we really like it," sales manager of Z-Tech Auto Body Destiny Moore said Tuesday afternoon.

So now that the city plans to build a new road linking North Major Drive and Folsom Drive to the mall, which may help alleviate some of that traffic, what do these business managers think? Good idea or bad idea?

"I think a little bit of both," said Moore.

Prince thinks it will help.

The road is estimated to cost about $6 million. The city plans to pay for it using funds from natural gas drilling at the Beaumont Municipal Airport.



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