Ector County neighborhood unites to get caliche roads paved

Published: Oct. 13, 2020 at 5:31 PM CDT
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ODESSA, Texas (KOSA) -

One South Ector County neighborhood is uniting to try to get their roads up to par.

Residents off U.S. Highway 385 say driving even a short distance just to get to their houses is a pain.

“Just rattles everything,” Miguel Simental said. “Just rattled your whole car. Shocks. You hear your shocks just working itself out.”

He wasn’t exaggerating.

“You’re weaving in and out of holes like this,” Adrian Bustillos said. “So, it’s hard on the vehicles. It’s hard on just the house alone because you know it takes a lot of time an effort just to keep everything clean.”

“I worked in the oilfield going down dirt roads and it’s worse than that,” Simental said.

It’s a problem Bustillos has taken to the commissioners before, but this time he tried a different approach.

He brought at least twenty of his neighbors with him to the commissioners' court to help make his case that the county should spent about $580,000 to pave three miles of their roads.

“We need this road paved,” Bustillos said. “I mean, whenever my car is fitting into a hole in the road. It’s got to get—we need help.”

There’s just one problem.

The roads up until Bustillo’s neighborhood are public, so they’re paved. But one step further they’re all private roads, which are outside the county’s jurisdiction.

The commissioners told the group those caliche roads will have to stay that way unless they can get enough signatures on a petition that would make the roads public.

Bustillos said he’s confident he can get signatures from every house in his neighborhood and eventually put these dusty roads in his rear view.

“I think the county will do what’s right and help us out,” he said.

“If you want something done, get your people around,” Simental said. “Make your voice heard.”

The county said if these residents take all the required steps, it’ll still take some time to get all the roads paved.

The project could be finished in about four years if all goes well.

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