Doctor: Mr. Smith, are you ready for your shoulder surgery next week?
Patient: Yes, Doctor.
Doctor: BTW, how is your knee these days?
Patient: I still experience stiffness in the right knee in the morning or after sitting for a long period.
Doctor: I have an idea to save time and money for you.
Patient: Great! What is it?
Doctor: Since you will anyway be in the operating room under general anesthesia for the shoulder procedure, we can go ahead and replace your right leg. And the best part is that you don’t have to worry about the cost, since insurance will pay for it.
I have heard many reasons as justification for expanding Morriss Road to six (6) lanes.
Due to LOS (level of service) degradation, a new project would trigger Morriss to fail SMARTGrowth.
Looking at the data, LOS appears to be low only during the very peak two (2) hours in a day at some parts of the road only.
Does it mean we replace the leg if the knee is sore in the morning and after sitting for a long period?
We are getting some free money from regional toll revenue, so let’s use it.
When you look deep, it is still public money.
- If we did want to keep it, it can possibly be used for further improvements to Gerault Road that was expanded as part of the Phase I.
- It can be used for improvements (or expansion) to the intersections/turn-lanes along Morriss.
- Since almost everything is negotiable, especially, when it is for betterment, we should think about going back and negotiating this money for something else that adds value to both Flower Mound and Lewisville area.
If expansion is done with the already planned panel replacement, it will offer cost-savings.
This would be true and should be done only if the expansion was necessary.
This should not be the reason to undertake expansion.
Morriss has always been a Major Arterial road in the Master Thoroughfare Plan.
This is true.
I do give credit to the planners. However,
- Since then the growth along Morriss stayed primarily residential.
- The area along and around Morriss has pretty much developed which precludes any further substantial increase in the traffic on Morriss.
- Flower Mound is known for parks and open spaces which is also the top wish of the residents. Hence, tearing down the major green median is counter to the Town’s trademark.
My Answer and Recommendation
The real question is, “Does Morriss Road need to be expanded to six (6) lanes?”
My answer is, “No.”
The current process has ensued where Town Council encouraged this item to be brought up again, town staff worked on it and will present it to the Town Council for approval. On such an important issue, the large number of residents that are a vocal majority have been not been included in the process. These residents’ lives and homes are directly impacted by future of Morriss Road.
Many of these wonderful residents have thoroughly analyzed the various sections of the road and intersections, the Town Codes, and the practical implications, especially near the school zones, where improvements could be made to solve the traffic flow which is an issue only during couple of hours each day.
I recommend that a volunteer residents’ committee work with the Transportation Commission and the Town staff to discuss all the options, identify all the possible improvements without expanding Morris Road to six (6) lanes, and present it to the Town Council.
Sandeep Sharma (for Flower Mound Town Council Place 2)
Flower Mound, TX