CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- If you drive Rea Road near Pineville-Matthews Road, we feel for you.
The area already looks like a bomb went off due to a widening project with all the trees and shrubs cut down.
Now, neighbors say intermittent lane closures at that intersection are slowing down already backed up traffic and making the situation even worse.
Some drivers say they are waiting through what must be ten light changes at times to get through the intersection and wonder if the widening project will be worth it.
By the frustrated looks on their faces, the twiddling of the thumbs and the barely moving traffic, it's hard to convince people who live along and drive down Rea Road that what they're seeing is progress.
"It's backed up pretty much all day," said neighbor Tracy Ford.
Ford lives on Rea Road and says with a median coming as part of the widening project will mean lots of u-turns to get into his driveway.
"If you're pulling out of a neighborhood, it's probably a convenience, but if you're living right here on the road, then it's probably not going to be a convenience," Ford said.
Overall, the city is widening Rea Road from Colony Road to Pineville-Matthews Road saying it will ease congestion, make it safer, add turn lanes, bike lanes and sidewalks. Crews are also raising the road's elevation in some spots by seven to 11 feet to eliminate sight distance problems for cars coming in and out of subdivisions.
"It looks like a war zone compared to what it used to look like," said neighbor George Nassif.
He isn't convinced all the changes will help. Neither are other homeowners who have lived on Rea Road for decades.
"You think if people go 50, 60, 70 miles an hour on this road now with all the hills that they're going to slow down when they flatten it out? It will speed up," Nassif said.
The city is spending $22.5 million dollars on the widening. Voters approved the money in a 2008 bond referendum.
The price of progress to Nassif includes 87 trees cut down from his yard, 1600 square feet of land dug up and a 200 foot wooden fence removed.
He's been compensated for his loss.
Nassif says once finished, Rea Road will look great, but it will still be a two lane road.
"You still have a mile and a half between stoplights, so how fast did you move the traffic?" he said.
Others neighbors say the current mess will eventually be a big help once the widening is finished, but they're not looking forward to two years of construction.
The intermittent lane closures at Rea and Pineville Matthews run through September 20th.