Galleria-area businesses not looking forward to ramp closures: 'It's going to be impossible'

Mayra Moreno Image
Friday, June 4, 2021
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Though drivers felt a sense of relief after a closure was postponed due to weather, they aren't ready for the traffic headaches.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- After already having been postponed once due to heavy rain Thursday night, the closure of the Southwest Freeway northbound connector ramp to I-610 West Loop northbound has been postponed yet again.

Crews had scheduled the closure for this weekend but according to Houston TranStar, the mainlanes closures will be pushed back to next weekend.

Though drivers said they felt a sense of relief about the rescheduling, they aren't ready for what next weekend will bring.

At the corner of what's going to be a traffic nightmare, you will find Casa de Montecristo - a tobacco shop just off the West Loop.

Jonathan Nelson, a cigar concierge for the shop, told ABC13 he's dreading what's to come for his customers.

"We have one of the largest cigar selections in the city," he said. "Anytime commuter time goes up, it's bad for everyone. We have people come [and] drive 45 minutes to get here, and with traffic, it's going to be impossible."

Starting net weekend until sometime early next year, the I-69 Southwest Freeway connector ramp to 610 West Loop northbound will be closed.

To try to get around this, you can take the Fournace/Bellaire exit ramp and go on to the West Loop South then make a U-turn under the loop to head north. Then you can enter the northbound main lanes on the West Loop

Trying to think of your shortcut already? Don't worry! We've got the top detours in the video below.

"I'm sure the neighborhoods behind us won't be happy at all," said Nelson.

Due to that concern, TxDOT said it plans to limit access to the Afton Oaks neighborhood from the I-69 southbound frontage road so that drivers won't cut through to get to Richmond.

All of this is part of a $259 million project to take down the existing ramps and reconstruct new ones that will enhance safety and improve mobility, according to TxDOT.

For any Houston driver, it's safe to say it's going to be a long road ahead.

"Being in Houston, we just hope for the best," said Nelson.

Do you hate Houston traffic as much as we do? Join the club!

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