Richmond County eyes T-SPLOST funds to help for road improvements

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Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2019
News 12 at 6 O’Clock/NBC at 7

AUGUSTA, GA (WRDW/WAGT) -- Richmond County could get more than $200 million in T-SPLOST funds for road improvements.

There is a long list of improvements they want to get done, but one category that stands out is safety and traffic operations.

They want to add more cameras to intersections. Right now, they can control traffic signals and monitor traffic at about 100 intersections, but there's more than 200 intersections in the county.

Other improvements include lighting.

Business owners like Ashley Wright watch cars on Gordon Highway every day.

“I would say that it is much busier than when we first got here in 2007,” Wright said.

They see a good amount of accidents out there as well.

There's a lot of heavy traffic, and people it seems like they're racing to get somewhere,” John Ussery, of Richmond County Traffic and Engineering, said. “I don’t know if it's work or where they're trying to go, but it's busy in the mornings definitely.”

Back in March, a 33-year-old man crashed into a pole on Gordon Highway and lost his life. Another accident on the same road claimed a woman's life in July. Richmond County is looking to improve safety with the next round of T-SPLOST money.

“We'd like to improve the lighting, a lot of the lighting along certain sections of Gordon Highway aren't up to the current standards, so we'd like to improve that,” Ussery said.

They also want to improve lighting on Doug Barnard Parkway.

“It's very important to increase the amount of lighting on our roadways, especially the major roadways that have high speeds and high volume of traffic, so you can better react to what's going on,” Ussery said.

Other improvements include repaving and restriping Gordon Highway and adding guard rails along the median.

Wright is happy to hear changes could be coming.

“I want them to do more,” Wright said. “Everybody uses Gordon Highway as the motor mouth to get to where they need to go.”

Before any improvements can be done, we will have to vote on whether we keep T-SPLOST. That will be on the ballot at some point in the next year. If we do vote to continue it, the city would not start working on the projects until 2022 to 2023.

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