Two major road repair projects are about to kickoff in Corpus Christi and both of them have been a longtime coming

Two major road construction projects are about to kickoff in Corpus Christi and both of them have been a longtime coming for residents, commuters and vacationers who use them.

Work is almost set to begin on the long awaited Ocean Drive resurfacing project and the Laguna Shores reconstruction project in the coming weeks, and birth of those projects mean a step in the right direction.

“Both of these projects are real game changers,” said District Four Councilman Greg Smith. “I expect Ocean Drive to be completed in about 6 months. The Laguna Shores will take a little bit longer, but that should be done in about a year or so. “

Smith, who has been an advocate for both projects says that he is excited to see the projects both get underway. But as excited as Smith is about the project, residents and drivers are even more excited about the projects.

“We just love having people come to our beautiful city,” says Roland Alvarado. “But I sure hate taking them down these bad roads.”

Alvarado says that both he and his friends from San Antonio love to go fishing in the Laguna Madre and they love to go cruise down Ocean Drive. Both roads, Alvarado says leave a bad taste in people’s mouth about the city. He says that he believes that really hurts the community.

“When you go to Galveston and drive up and down the Seawall it is smooth as can be,” Alvarado said. “Ocean Drive is really a mess.”

Councilman Smith says that he feels much the same way.

“Ocean Drive is a legacy roadway and so is Laguna Shores,” Smith says. “Laguna Shores is actually a parkway.”

That one word actually means a lot in terms of the Laguna Shores Project, which was approved by voters in 2018.

By definition, a “parkway,” is commonly designated as a scenic route. Few would argue that Laguna Shores does not qualify as such. But during periods of high tides and tropical weather, Laguna Shores Road becomes more like a waterway.

Laguna Shores during Hurricane Hanna during July, 2020. (Matt Pierce Briscoe/Southside Light News)

“We are going to finally fix that,” Smith says. “We are going to raise it 18-21 inches in places, we are going to widen it and put some drainage in there. It is going to be real nice.”

Smith says that he feels when it is all said and done, those who drive up and down Laguna Shores will be impressed with what the city has done with the project.

“I fought hard for these projects,” Smith said. “I am really proud of the projects and am really excited about them.”

He has every reason to be. Smith, who can tell you every engineering and financial detail around both of the projects has championed these projects his entire time that he has been on council.

“Ocean Drive is just a beautiful drive and we should be proud of it,” Smith said. “Laguna Shores is something that the people of Flour Bluff had been asking for and the city is delivering on that.”

The Ocean Drive project will be completed much sooner because it is more of a resurfacing project and the signatures should be penned to get work started this coming week at council. As far as Laguna Shores goes, that project is in the bidding stage and those details should be finalized within the coming weeks, with work beginning shortly after.

“these are going to be impressive projects,” Smith said. “We have put a lot of work into them. I can;t wait to see them both finished.”

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