Development is a given in many areas, but it can cause issues when it comes to traffic. Smaller towns may find their road system is inadequate, and it could need updating. Building new roads is an expensive proposition, but the complaints of local residents sitting in traffic could be the larger issue. Rather than creating entirely new streets, many small towns have found widening main roads is a better solution. They might need to move a few buildings or reroute traffic in some areas, but the overall goal of easing traffic can often be accomplished.
One of the big issues with adding to an existing road is the fact that older towns and villages have buildings close together. It can create a problem because they might need to be demolished, and there could be an argument over historical buildings being torn down. Moving buildings might seem like an impossible task, but historical and older structures have been successfully relocated. It could be a costly proposition, but replacing all the structures could be more expensive.
Not all buildings can be moved, so widening a particular roadway could be impossible. Older cities and towns run into this obstacle when they upgrade, and many have chosen to let traffic flow in only one direction on a road to solve the issue. Adjoining roads can also be used to keep traffic moving through the downtown area, and the easing of congestion often wins over opponents of the plan. It is one of the least costly ways to relieving traffic in the busiest areas of a community.
There are still plenty of areas where roads are being widened, and many of them are roads where expansion over time has been part of the plan. Modern communities now plan on road expansion as they build, and they phase it in over time to keep the traffic moving and the costs within reach.