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On October 29th, 2018, the City of Douglasville invited representatives from the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) to meet and discuss the progress of the State Route 92 Relocation Project. In addition to discussing the concerns of the City Council, the GDOT representatives also took comments and questions from citizens who attended. To inform and be transparent, the transcript of the citizen questions and comments are listed below:
Q1: If the project completion is realistically beyond November 2020, what is the new estimated completion date?
A1: The contractor has submitted a schedule that proposes completion in early 2021, but that schedule has not been approved by GDOT. GDOT is still discussing an incentivized completion as early as feasible.
Q2: How far will the sound barriers extend on SR 92? Will they go east to Strickland? Will they be installed on the north side of the railroad tracks?
A2: The sound walls will go as far as Cooper Street. There are two sound walls on the south side and three sound walls on the north side of the railroad tracks to be installed. Locations of sound barriers are determined during the design phase after traffic noise analysis is conducted. This analysis tells us if/where additional traffic noise from the project will impact homes or businesses.
Q3: Since SR 92 will become a six-lane road, will GDOT work with the schools to help ensure crossing safety in advance?
A3: GDOT will be glad to coordinate with the school. The intersection at the school will have a traffic signal. The signal timing can be programmed for slower pedestrians, like children and the elderly, and to accommodate left turns for school buses. We will put the school in touch with GDOT’s Safe Routes to School (SRTS) coordinator and may also assist with special striping and other markers designed to keep pedestrians safe in school zones. Please refer to the Georgia Safe Routes to School Guidebook at http://www.dot.ga.gov/DS/SafetyOperation/SRTS or contact Jay Anninos at (404) 635-2834 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q4: At the last meeting, we talked about Brown Street, which is now closed to traffic. How do we get ambulances and emergency help from the park to residents of the apartments? GDOT needs to turn over the street to the City to get access for emergency vehicles.
A4: Putting traffic on that street is unsafe at this time. The drainage pip underneath is not located deep enough to carry traffic. Plan revisions are in the works right now to address the issue.
Q5: Comment on need to get additional sidewalks near the local elementary and middle schools.
A5: The comment was not related to this project. This was a general comment about providing sidewalks near schools in Lithia Springs.
Q6: Complaint from resident whose property is located on a steep hill where the sidewalks and grading was done. His home is being impacted by water draining on his front yard from a water main burst, limited access and damage to his driveway, overgrown weeds and trees in the area. When will work re-start so these issues can be fixed.
A6: The GDOT construction Project Engineer went to the location and observed that there were no issues as stated. The work there was properly performed and installed, and no land disturbance was observed. The Project Engineer also called the property owner twice, with no answer and was not able to leave a voicemail. We will continue to monitor the area during and after rain events.
Q7: At the project start, was GDOT aware of the train schedule and other things that could delay the project?
A7: Yes, at the project start, we confirmed with Norfolk Southern Railroad where the new location of the track should be for us to do the work. Unfortunately, they relocated the temporary track three to five feet south of the location for which we planned and designed. That has created a grade separation that trucks could not navigate, which caused the closure of the Mozley Street railroad crossing. Due to the shift in the track location, the project lost nine months and additional funds were spent reconfiguring the design.
Q8: Concern about traffic backups, left turn access and safety in front of Mitchell Appliances location. Will construction affect my business?
A8: Douglasville Police Officer responded to the first part of this question. The GDOT construction Project Engineer also spoke with the business owner and explained to him that no work will be conducted near his business.
Q9: Concern raised about speed limits on Hillard Street.
A9: The City responded with information about how to secure speed bumps and speed limit signs in their neighborhood.
Q10: Could we get a four way stop at SR 92/Dallas Highway and Parker Street? Currently there is a “Don Not Block Intersection” sign, which no one pays attention to.
A10: GDOT responded that a stop sign is not appropriate for SR 92/Dallas Highway because of its functional classification, but we will evaluate whether a larger “Do Not Block Intersection” sign might help.
Q11: Concern raised about traffic backups and left turn at McCauley, cannot make right turn due to parked trailer, creating a blind spot.
A11: City Police Officer responded to this concern.
Q12: Why is the contractor drilling through the rock the reason for the delayed project completion?
A12: Excavation of the rock underneath the existing location of rail track is the pivotal work to get us to completion. There is 35 to 40 feet of solid granite under the tracks that must be excavated and blasted before we can begin building the three bridges above.
Q13: Did you know of the obstacles before project start?
A13: Yes, we knew the granite was there, but when Norfolk Southern Railroad moved their track to an alternate location, it changed the wall design and location and our entire work plan.
Q14: Congressman David Scott would like to receive regular updates on this project.
A14: GDOT will ensure the Congressman receives updates.
Q15: Concerns about left turns out of Cedar Place subdivision on West Strickland.
A15: The City will evaluate the left turn issues at that location.
Q16: Can monthly project updates be added to the project website?
A16: Yes, GDOT will provide monthly project updates on its project website.
The Mayor and City Council will continue periodic meetings for the SR 92 relocation project in the Spring of 2019. It will provide community leaders and citizens continued opportunities to provide input and concerns in addition to asking any questions about the project. GDOT has and will continue to provide periodic updates to the SR 92 relocation project on the project website: http://www.dot.ga.gov/BS/Projects/SpecialProjects/SR92. The City of Douglasville will also advertise the exact date of the next meeting. For more information on the SR 92 relocation project, visit the City’s website at www.DouglasvilleGA.gov or the City’s Facebook page.