Some doubt efficacy of traffic lights

Jared Tucker

A new, temporary traffic light is scheduled to be installed at the intersection of Main and Second Streets in downtown Portales, but not all business owners and drivers alike are convinced the light will solve the traffic congestion on the square.

Nancy Tivis, owner of Fashion Girl Clothing, said a traffic light will just make traffic worse downtown, and a bigger headache for her customers to get out of the parking spaces in front of her shop.

“I don’t think it will affect us either way … the only way it will help is if they turn (Main Street) back into a one-way,” Tivis said.

Tivis said the problem with a traffic light is that customers parked on second can’t get out of the parking spaces when traffic is stopped, because motorists driving on Second Street will not yield to the customers trying to leave the parking spaces.

According to The New Mexico Department of Transportation, the temporary traffic light is to be installed the second or third week of October. The department is still planning the day the permanent light will be installed.

Buzz Goodson, owner of Bar G Western Wear said he is happy to hear that a plan for a traffic light has been announced, and thinks it will relieve the congestion on his block. Goodson said although he’s happy that NMDOT took his suggestion at the U.S. 70 Meeting, he’s still planning to move his business off of the square if his building sells.

“I think everyone’s had enough of me. I’ve complained and complained until I’m blue in the face. I’m tired of fighting with them,” Goodson said.

Portales resident Kathy Mobley said she despises the new traffic arrangements downtown, but added she thinks a stop light is better than a stop sign at that particular intersection.