Downtown construction causes potential safety concern for pedestrians ahead of Fiesta

SAN ANTONIO – Emi Lees said this is her first time traveling to San Antonio, but getting around isn’t as easy as expected.

“Yes, I really like it,” the 9-year-old said. “It’s not easy to walk around.”

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Emi and her parents had just left the Tower of the Americas when they were met with construction cones. They were trying to get across South Alamo Street near Cesar E. Chavez when they realized some sidewalks were closed and had to find another way around.

“It’s kind of been a little bit harder than it should be,” Emi said. “It’s a little bit scary with all these cars honking and driving all over the place.”

Parts of South Alamo Street are closed for construction because of an ongoing project. It’s one of many spots across downtown San Antonio that are shut down because of construction.

Ahead of Fiesta, pedestrians and nearby businesses say they have safety and traffic concerns.

“It’s actually quite inconvenient,” said Christopher De Jesus, a resident. “We had to park all the way two blocks down, thinking that we were going to get here in an easy manner, but all the roads are blocked off, and we had to walk about half a mile to cross a pedestrian walkway.”

Rene Fernandez, owner of Hola, said he sees dozens of people a day illegally crossing the street because the sidewalks are closed.

“It could create a big problem,” Fernandez said.

But Razi Hosseini, director of the Public Works Department, said people shouldn’t be concerned. He said many roads downtown are still open, and these projects are necessary to grow San Antonio.

“This is the time we need to improve some of those,” Hosseini said. “If we don’t rebuild those, we are going to have — come summertime, water break sewer lines may not function.”

Hosseini said his department is trying to come up with solutions through stickers and signs to help direct people where to walk during Fiesta. Blue stickers have been placed on Market Street and Cesar E Chavez near South Alamo.

Hosseini said his best recommendation is for people to use public transportation during downtown festivities.

To check on the status of these projects, click here.


Find more Fiesta coverage on KSAT.com here

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