Arlington resident Adam Nicholson uses a lot of phrases to describe his daily commute, but between the potholes and stop-and-go traffic he encounters, “smooth sailing” isn’t one of them.
“I’ve lived in Arlington for 15 years and it’s never gotten any better,” said Nicholson. “It’s getting worse, I think.”
A new study by a transportation research group called TRIP would tend to agree with him. The D.C.-based group presented their findings Wednesday morning in Arlington.
They looked at the most recent highway data from state and federal agencies and found that 50 percent of major roads in the Metroplex are currently in poor or mediocre condition.
“Certainly drivers know when they hit a pothole or when they’re stuck in traffic congestion,” said Carolyn Kelly, associate director of research and communication for TRIP. “But they may not know it has a very significant impact on their wallets.”
The report said those deficient roads cost each driver in North Texas an estimated $1,740 each year in lost time, wasted fuel and extra vehicle operating costs.
“The problem is huge,” said Tarrant County Commissioner Gary Fickes.
Fickes said there’s no denying our roads need help. The issue is that state and federal dollars aren’t coming into the region quickly enough to fix the roads we have and to build the new ones we need.
“Only about one-third of the projects that get approved actually get built,” said Fickes.
He hopes the TRIP report will put more pressure on lawmakers to step up funding — and soon.
Nicholson wants our elected leaders to take action as well because he can think of many other things $1,740 will buy.
“That stings a little bit,” said Nicholson.