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Public looks at options for fixing confusing intersection
by Liz Marino
lmarino@neighbornewspapers.com
June 12, 2013 12:43 PM | 1916 views | 1 1 comments | 69 69 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Liz Marino<br>Douglas County resident Jack Yancey looks at one of the proposed roundabout designs as Lenor Bromberg of Kennedy Engineering answers questions during an open meeting last week at Bill Arp Elementary School.
Staff / Liz Marino
Douglas County resident Jack Yancey looks at one of the proposed roundabout designs as Lenor Bromberg of Kennedy Engineering answers questions during an open meeting last week at Bill Arp Elementary School.
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Staff / Liz Marino<br>Douglas County DOT director Randy Hulsey shares information with District 4 Commissioner Ann Jones Guider at an open house to obtain public comment on two proposals for a roundabout at the intersections of Bank’s Mill and Pool roads and Ga. Hwy. 5 last week at an open house at Bill Arp Elementary School.
Staff / Liz Marino
Douglas County DOT director Randy Hulsey shares information with District 4 Commissioner Ann Jones Guider at an open house to obtain public comment on two proposals for a roundabout at the intersections of Bank’s Mill and Pool roads and Ga. Hwy. 5 last week at an open house at Bill Arp Elementary School.
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Staff / Liz Marino<br>Skip Welch of Station 3 of the Douglas County Fire Department, resident Mike Bryant and pastor Josh Buice of Pray’s Mill Baptist Church look over proposals for a roundabout at the intersection of Ga. Hwy. 5 and Pool and Banks’s Mill roads, which may have some impact on the church and property in the area.
Staff / Liz Marino
Skip Welch of Station 3 of the Douglas County Fire Department, resident Mike Bryant and pastor Josh Buice of Pray’s Mill Baptist Church look over proposals for a roundabout at the intersection of Ga. Hwy. 5 and Pool and Banks’s Mill roads, which may have some impact on the church and property in the area.
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About 200 Douglas County residents who have experienced the confusing intersection of Ga. Hwy. 5 and Banks Mill, Pool and Dorsett Shoals roads saw proposed Georgia Department of Transportation options to correct the problem last week.

Representatives from GDOT offered two designs for a roundabout — a circular road taking the place of a four-way stop — during an open house at Bill Arp Elementary School.

The designs were the result of a three-year study offering alternatives to “mitigate risk and improve operational efficiency of the intersection,” according to GDOT.

The consensus from those in attendance was both designs have positive and negative impacts.

Of the two designs, alternative plan A takes the intersection and moves it to the north of the property at Pray’s Mill Baptist Church at a 110-foot radius. A traffic light would be installed at Banks Mill Road, according to Lenor Bromberg with Kennedy Engineering.

She said that alternative plan B roundabout would have a 150-foot radius across the right of way and increase the project cost by 5 to 10 percent.

Plan B, she explained would require more right of way acquisition, but would minimize impact on homes near the intersection.

Bromberg explained that the project is still under environmental studies and designs, and it could be as long as four years before construction would start. Once begun, the project should take about 18 months to complete.

Josh Buice is pastor at Pray’s Mill Baptist Church, which faces Hwy. 5 and is sandwiched between Banks Mill and Pool roads. He said that “the designs would be beneficial either way because of the traffic problems we’ve incurred.”

“I don’t know which option will benefit us the most,” he said.

Either way, the church’s cemetery has been deemed historic by the state and will not be impacted, Bromberg said.

According to Douglas County Department of Transportation Director Randy Husley, the roundabout concept is the best choice for the area.

He said although traffic might slow, it would not stop.

He explained that the design would be much larger than the one currently in place at Hwy. 5 and 166 and would feature additional lanes and road alignments which would give drivers “a better solution for what has been a very troubling intersection for a long, long time.”

Public comments can be made until June 20 by visiting GDOT’s website at www.dot.ga.gov and click on information center. Select Douglas County and select project SR 5 at CR174/Dorset Shoals Rd and CR 198/Banks Mill Rd/Pool Rd. then click on comment.
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June 12, 2013
The FHWA has a video about modern roundabouts that is mostly accurate (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhHzly_6lWM ).

Modern roundabouts are the safest form of intersection in the world. Visit http://tinyurl.com/iihsRAB for modern roundabout FAQs and safety facts. Modern roundabouts, and the pedestrian refuge islands approaching them, are two of nine proven safety measures identified by the FHWA, http://tinyurl.com/7qvsaem

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