Traffic around Fort Hood’s main gate rivals that on U.S. Interstate Highway 35 through Temple, making business attractive for the area.
According to traffic count maps from the Texas Department of Transportation, an average of 93,000 vehicles drove on U.S. Highway 190 between Fort Hood Street and the Bernie Beck Gate exit per day in 2012.
In Temple, about 110,000 vehicles drove on I-35 just near the U.S. 190 East exit.
“What you see is that numbers are equal and rival to what you see on I-35, which is because of Fort Hood,” said Ken Roberts a spokesperson for TxDOT.
The maps, released every September, show 91,000 vehicles driving through the same Killeen location per day in 2011.
Between Clear Creek Road and the Bernie Beck Gate, there were 74,000 drivers per day in 2012 and 75,000 in 2011.
While TxDOT uses the figures to plan for road projects, such as the U.S. 190 expansion happening now, the figures also are valuable for business owners.
“Businesses and commercial developers look at that same information to determine high traffic locations, which will benefit their future plans for possible retail development,” Roberts said.
Property managers and commercial site sellers keep track of the numbers, said Barry Hinshaw, a real estate agent with John Reider Properties.
The figures are reported annually on every TxDOT roadway and every five years on major connectors to TxDOT roads, Roberts said.
“From a franchisee or a commercial tenant’s point of view, traffic counts is how many people will see their store per day,” Hinshaw said. “High traffic counts are going to be more important to the instant businesses (such as restaurants) and the sign business.”
When working with people looking to buy or lease commercial real estate, real estate agents and property managers should try to match that client’s demographic with the right traffic count, Hinshaw said.
High traffic counts also increase rent and sale prices of the properties.
A doctor’s office for instance may do better on Elms, where the traffic count is lower, compared to Stan Schlueter, Hinshaw said.
Plus doctor’s offices also work more on referrals.
As traffic continues to grow, more businesses tend to locate in those areas. TxDOT also then tends to increase roadway capacity, which will affect that traffic and commercial growth again, Roberts said.
“It is the long-standing cliche — if you build it, they will come,” Roberts said.
One area where that is happening is Clear Creek, Hinshaw said.
In 2012, Clear Creek at U.S. 190 saw 31,000 drivers per day. The number was about 30,000 in 2010.
Along Clear Creek there is an entrance to Fort Hood, Metroplex, two colleges, and because of those developments, you now have several fast food restaurants, strip centers and more medical clinics, Hinshaw said.
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Other high traffic area according to the 2012 average traffic count map.
U.S. Highway 190 and Constitution Drive in Copperas Cove - 45,000
U.S. 190 between Clear Creek and Fort Hood main gate - 74,000
State Highway 195 intersection south of U.S. 190 - 30,000
State Highway 195 intersection north of U.S. 190 - 28,000
U.S. 190 between Farm-to-Market Road 2410 and Stan Schlueter - 79,000
FM 2410 and Veterans Memorial Boulevard - 20,000
Stan Schlueter before SH 195 - 21,000
US 190 east of Avenue D in Copperas Cove - 51,000
FM 2410 at the U.S. 190 overpass - 28,000