COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- By 2050, Brazos County is expected to double in population and talks about how roadways will change in response to the population growth are already in the planning stages.
“Everybody is telling us, it's coming, we're going to double in population, said Daniel Rudge, the executive director for the Bryan-College Station Metropolitan Planning Organization. “We have to be prepared for it.”
His team has been working on a plan to expand the roads in Brazos County for over a year now.
“We’ve tried to make it clear that we want the public to comment, we take every comment very seriously,” Rudge said.
After 11 meetings, 2,000 concerned emails and the same number of verbal complaints face to face, the plan is expected to be presented to the Brazos County Commissioners Court on June 26, 2017.
Not everyone is completely on board with the plan.
Walter Daugherity, a resident of Forest Lake neighborhood, says he's all for the expansion of roads, but he fears some of the road constructions could intrude in his neighborhood.
“We were concerned about the possible for potential negative changes for the neighborhood, Daugherity said. “If we were concerned, some other people might be too. Indeed, that was the case. “
In just two days a petition was made with over 150 signatures from the neighborhood, asking to prevent two superhighways being built next to their neighborhood. They fear the new highway would bring more traffic, pollution, crime, and other factors to their quiet neighborhood. The current plan has moved those highways further, but not far enough Daugherity says.
"One of the most striking things was I think only 3 people out of the 150 people knew about it,“ Daugherity said.
Rudge says it’s a challenge to find the middle of the road for an ever-growing community and keeping the people who already live here comfortable. He’s confident that 95% of people who have come forth with a proposal are comfortable with the idea.
"It was really trying to work with those individuals to find an alternative that worked for both them and for what we were trying to do,” Rudge said.