Local Driver Learns How To Merge

[Photo by Goggle Bob]

[Photo by Goggle Bob]

 Brownwood, Tx.–The Austin Avenue overpass, the third in the city’s history and the second to feature an on-ramp has recently been declared the site of the latest milestone erected in the annals of Brownwood’s gas-powered traffic period. Trumping the horse and buggy as the primary mode of local transportation as early as the 1970’s, the automobile has improved both travel time and commerce for patrons moving within the throbbing metropolis of Brownwood, but still remains an enigma to many, and often presents a steep learning curve when encountering state of the art structures intended to efficiently channel the ebb and flow of traffic. In contrast to the early years when the Austin avenue underpass, simple and rudimentary in design, largely eliminated all need to make decisions on the fly, its modern counterpart, the overpass, offers confident drivers the opportunity to demonstrate a higher level of skill when negotiating Brownwood’s thoroughfares. One such driver met that challenge head-on today. “I was just driving up the overpass, watching the cars on the ramp, when It occurred to me that if I moved over into the other lane those folks could just pull on out before waiting for me to pass by and traffic would keep flowing,” said Judy Boatman.

The West Commerce overpass, Brownwood’s first effort to manage a problematic intersection using an elevated thruway, offered an early attempt to encourage local motorists to learn modern traffic practices such as the one Mrs Boatman has described. Spanning the transitional phase of the Austin Avenue/Belle Plain expressway, this industrial achievement, well ahead of its time, incorporated into its design the first on/off ramp available for use in Brownwood. However, this particular element of engineering genius remained a mystery as it presented itself as a source of intimidation for most drivers who avoided it at all costs. Thus, city officials abandoned the design during the Truman Harlow project, Brownwood’s second installment in their growing saga of overpass construction, which features the unique opportunity for motorists approaching from Carnegie or the Old Coleman Road to wait on a passing train despite the fact there is an overpass in place. In lieu of an on-ramp, designers opted for the u-turn feature instead, installed approximately between the streets of Whaley and Gill in front of the St. Mary’s Catholic Church.

Today’s motorists can only reference the West Commerce structure in honor of Brownwood’s historical past as it has since been replaced with an updated traffic light configuration. “My daddy took us up that old ramp on Commerce once when I was young,” said Bertha Northseider. “We must’ve waited for an hour at the top. We didn’t know what to do. Merging wasn’t started in Brownwood yet. I’m glad it’s here now. I plan to use it soon.”

In other news, one local resident passed out from dehydration while waiting for the notoriously tardy left turn signal at the Carnegie and Fisk traffic light, then later endured a brief stay at BMRC. 

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If you enjoyed this post don’t forget to like the Goggle’s Facebook page, or click the follow button. Thanks for reading the Goggle Eyed Gazette.


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