SOUTHWEST RANCHES (CBS4) – A road block issue that once divided parts of Pembroke Pines and Southwest Ranches is back on the map.
Southwest Ranches Town Council members voted Thursday night to close the roads on Southwest 199th, 202nd and 205th Avenues.
Those Avenues are partly in Southwest Ranches and partly in Pembroke Pines just off Griffin road in far western Broward County.
Some Pembroke Pines residents are relieved.
Michael Dougherty moved to Southwest 199th Avenue over 20 years ago, when it was mostly rural.
He says when they took the barricades down six years ago, there’s been nothing but noise.
“There’s over 1300 cars a day and we get lawn service vehicles, tractor trailers hauling cars. It’s hectic to get in and get out,” said Dougherty.
His neighbor Don Roberts who lives on the Southwest Ranches side of 199th agrees.
“Since installing the speed bumps and the new suspension on the vehicles, it doesn’t slow down drivers, whatsoever.”
But some residents are unhappy the barricades are going up again after a six year lull.
Iran Socarras and his wife regularly use the streets for easy access to Stirling Road and to drive their daughter to school.
Blockading the roads will mean they will have to use busy US 27. It will add travel time and danger to their drives they say.
“It gets annoying having to drive around, especially when it’s the street behind your house,” said Socarras.
Some say the real story behind the road closures is Southwest Ranches plan to build a massive and controversial immigration and detention center out west, and Pembroke Pines’ recent decision to oppose the project.
Don Roberts who opposes the center says it will hurt property values.
“I think instead of being known as a rural community we will be known as a prison town,” Roberts said.
The debate over the detention center rages on, but Pembroke Pines Mayor Frank Ortis tells CBS 4 News he believes the road closures may ‘not’ be a done deal.
Ortis says Pembroke Pines Commissioners will sit down with Southwest Ranches council members in early January and try to modify the road closures.
“I think there’s room for compromise in Southwest Ranches and Pembroke Pines,” said Ortis.
Ortis says he’d like to see only Southwest 199th blocked because residents there say the heavy traffic has become intolerable.