SAN ANTONIO – Crossing Culebra Road near I-10 has become a dangerous gamble for Jose Olivera and his wife. The couple crosses the road to get the bus stop, but Olivera said it’s not always worth the risk.
“I just turn back. I just turn around,” he said.
According to San Antonio police, a man and woman were killed crossing Culebra near Northwest 19th Street Wednesday night.
SAPD said one of the victims had used a walking stick, but the pair was not in the crosswalk when they were stuck.
Olivera grew up in the area, and she said she believes it’s only getting worse.
“I’m not surprised because it happens now so often,” Olivera said.
District 5 Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales said the distance between crosswalks is often too far and unrealistic for pedestrians.
She said drivers usually don’t slow down, which has caused Culebra Road to become dangerous.
“Pedestrians aren’t given the respect they deserve when we build streets like this one,” she said.
The councilwoman has been the lead advocate for Vision Zero since 2015. The initiative was aimed to reduce the number of deaths on San Antonio roads.
However, deaths have not slowed down. Gonzales believes Vision Zero should be a priority for the city and its residents so more lives can be saved.
“That’s one of the cultural shifts that has to happen,” said Gonzales.
Cuelbra has seen some improvements like concrete islands and additional lighting. However, Gonzales wants more investment into public transportation, like sidewalks and bike lanes.
City Council has approved more than $6 million for sidewalk and mobility improvements across the city. Gonzales said that it’s not clear where those improvements will take place.
However, she is hopeful Culebra will be a priority.