Government

More News | | | Editor

Leaders plan for traffic improvements to support Fort Gordon growth

Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014 7:01 PM
Last updated Monday, Feb. 3, 2014 1:07 AM
  • Follow Latest News

Improvements to the Au­gusta area’s transportation network can’t come quick enough to support the projected growth of Fort Gordon, transportation officials and city leaders say.

Horizon South Parkway (between Interstate 20 and Wrightsboro Road) in Grovetown is scheduled to get improvements.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
Horizon South Parkway (between Interstate 20 and Wrightsboro Road) in Grovetown is scheduled to get improvements.

To support a population boom spurred by the Army Cyber Command headquarters’ move to Augusta and growth of other missions at Fort Gordon, state leaders need to prioritize road projects near the post and “put some (other) things on the back burner,” said District 12 transportation board representative Don Grantham.

New projects will have to be fast-tracked, which means depending on more state and local planning – and possibly dollars – rather than federal help, Grantham said. Typically, the Georgia Department of Trans­por­tation takes seven years to complete a project, from right of way acquisition and environmental studies to design and construction.

“Instead of a seven-year program, we’re going to have to target a three- to four-year program,” Grantham said.

Grantham, department engineers and leaders from Richmond and Columbia counties have been meeting to discuss transportation infrastructure since the Cyber Com­mand’s announcement. Thou­sands of military personnel, government civilians and contractors are expected to move to the area through 2019.

“I feel sure we’ll be able to meet that growth,” said Augusta Commission member Mary Davis, who has been involved in planning discussions. “We definitely have to be proactive, and that’s what they’re doing.”

Nearly $60 million in road improvements in the congested Grovetown area that feeds into Fort Gordon isn’t enough to support the projected growth of the post, leaders say.

Three projects funded by the special 1 percent transportation tax are planned for the next nine years in Grove­town. Widening Hori­zon South Parkway and Lewis­ton Road and redesigning Robinson Avenue – all major routes for Fort Gordon commuters – will help traffic patterns but won’t be the only solutions, Grantham said.

“TSPLOST is going to be huge,” Davis said. “If we didn’t have it, we’d be in a worse place than we are.”

Creating a more direct route from Washington Road to Fort Gordon and a new interchange on Interstate 20 are proposals leaders are studying, said Thom Tuckey, the executive director of the CSRA Alliance for Fort Gordon. Also under consideration is a new entrance to Fort Gordon between Grove­town and Harlem that would likely replace the Robinson Avenue gate, where traffic back-ups are common, he said.

“With all the growth coming in, logical development and expansion areas are west Evans and to a lesser extent into south Augusta,” Tuckey said. “Grovetown can’t handle any more.”

Though the transportation network needs work, the area’s traffic will be a relief to many new arrivals, Tuckey said.

“Whatever is down here is going to be better than what they face in D.C.,” he said. “They are out of space to widen roads. We have an opportunity to alleviate that problem.”

Comments (20) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Pops
14950
Points
Pops 02/02/14 - 08:41 pm
12
5
All of the people coming into the

area will be moving into the CBD and the Laney-Walker area. I hope they have planned a major road from Ft. Gordon into these areas. No one involved with this Cyber Command will be looking to move into Columbia County. It's totally devoid of any artsy kinda class.

Riverman1
94481
Points
Riverman1 02/02/14 - 08:53 pm
8
5
Pops...funny.

Pops...funny.

countyman
21702
Points
countyman 02/03/14 - 01:24 am
5
7
Double standard .. Ignore 'West Evans'

Why didn't the phrase 'West Evans' spark any type of controversy? The naysayers wanted to make a huge deal over the word North Richmond, and they don't even live in RC.

The new families will be attending the Arts in the Heart, Westobou festival, Saturday Market on the River, etc in the CBD.. Why does making sarcastic remarks about RC make you feel good? The majority of the private white collar office jobs are coming to either West Augusta or the CBD. The recent job growth in the CBD includes Rural Sourcing, Southpoint Media, Augusta Lung Associates, etc..

Riverman1
94481
Points
Riverman1 02/03/14 - 04:17 am
5
3
Countyman, calm down

Countyman, calm down. We need y'all to help fix our roads that will be carrying the people to their homes in Columbia County. Thanks for diverting that money our way.

As someone who drove to work in DC for 4 years, I can tell you those folks will be happy to deal with our little bit of Columbia County traffic. The main artery into DC from the Maryland suburbs was Georgia Ave., incidentally.

Augz79
1083
Points
Augz79 02/03/14 - 06:00 am
2
2
simmah down, simmah down

Lower-case "west", county... revert threat level back to Defcon 5.

Augz79
1083
Points
Augz79 02/03/14 - 05:57 am
2
3
The CBD silver lining to every house sold in CC...

Props for turning an article about the need for roadworks due to jobs coming to Fort Gordon into a jobs commercial for the CBD. Even though most of the new residents will take their realtors' word on not taking a chance on Richmond County schools, at least they will still visit our fair city's CBD on the high holy holidays of Arts in the Heart, Saturday Market, and Westobou. Blessed be the CBD. Amen.

seenitB4
98802
Points
seenitB4 02/03/14 - 07:16 am
2
2
Pops is so funny

I agree...a main overpass will be needed...

Gosh I love Augusta...

rebellious
22090
Points
rebellious 02/03/14 - 07:19 am
5
1
Hope springs eternal

that some of the new residents will recognize the attributes of the Southern portion of Richmond County. Already built are a four lane U.S Hwy 1 all the way to Jefferson County and a four lane Tobacco Road providing an unencumbered commute to South routes of Windsor Spring/Peach Orchard/Highway 56. This direction takes one to less expensive land and the setting for larger lots and peaceful, quiet living all while being 20 minutes from the city.

But we can only hope the seven year rule will apply to the long awaited Windsor Spring widening. It would be folly to wish for a four year plan, seeing as it has been since 1991 when the design phase was initiated.

http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/government/2012-06-23/windsor-spring-r...

seenitB4
98802
Points
seenitB4 02/03/14 - 07:53 am
3
2
rebel

A great post rebel.

pja5529
2726
Points
pja5529 02/03/14 - 08:14 am
3
0
Windsor Spring

I agree rebellious. That area of South Augusta has several neighborhoods that are still being developed so that widening needs to happen now. CC will receive a majority of the residents but a good portion will still come to South Augusta and with traffic already bad on Windsor Spring, it will be a nightmare if that widening doesn't happen. I remember reading somewhere that the project was supposed to start in May of this year but haven't heard anything lately.

Little Lamb
49355
Points
Little Lamb 02/03/14 - 08:48 am
2
0
No Brainer

From the story:

Also under consideration is a new entrance to Fort Gordon between Grove­town and Harlem that would likely replace the Robinson Avenue gate, where traffic back-ups are common

Excuse me, but they already have a gate out there near the racetrack, right at the Richmond/Columbia County line. At this time it is an exit-only gate. All they've got to do is widen it to four or six lanes, install a larger sentry post, and they're ready to roll.

Little Lamb
49355
Points
Little Lamb 02/03/14 - 08:50 am
4
1
Excuse Me

Countyman posted:

The naysayers wanted to make a huge deal over the word North Richmond, and they don't even live in RC.

I was the first to point out the error and the absurdity of your "North Richmond" non-entity, and I certainly do live in RC.

Mr. Thackeray
957
Points
Mr. Thackeray 02/03/14 - 10:22 am
0
0
Note, nothing said about

Note, nothing said about expanding towards Harlem...wonder why?

internationallyunknown
5073
Points
internationallyunknown 02/03/14 - 10:27 am
3
0
Who knows where they will

Who knows where they will reside.

One thing is for sure, they have options.

countyman
21702
Points
countyman 02/03/14 - 11:33 am
1
3
''Countyman, calm down. We

''Countyman, calm down. We need y'all to help fix our roads that will be carrying the people to their homes in Columbia County. Thanks for diverting that money our way.''

Multiple counties are paying for the T-splost improvements(including Columbia).. The sarcastic remarks are strange considering the majority of Columbia County residents shop in RC(OVER 80%), and help pay for the splost improvements all the time..

''Props for turning an article about the need for roadworks due to jobs coming to Fort Gordon into a jobs commercial for the CBD.''

Props to becoming another Columbia County naysayer, and completely ignoring the comment from Pops.. The top schools are located in Richmond County, and not Columbia County.. The best chance you have for growth in CC revolves around steering from the local realtors.. I'm sorry to inform you, but it's not helping much in 2014..

countyman
21702
Points
countyman 02/03/14 - 11:35 am
2
3
Singles

PJA259... Columbia County 'might' receive the majority of new families, but definitely not the single people..

dichotomy
37683
Points
dichotomy 02/03/14 - 01:07 pm
5
0
There will be a lot of lower

There will be a lot of lower level, high tech employees coming too. Someone needs to build a moderate priced, 1 acre lot, high tech, fiber optic wired, smart phone controlled, automated home, housing development out here in South Richmond County for worker bee level income employees that will be coming. Not everyone will be overpaid management. Not all will have kids and be concerned with the school system. But all of them would like a smart home on a lot with a little breathing room between them and their neighbors and only 15 minutes to the gate.

Like rebellious said....wide roads, peaceful living, and 20 minutes to downtown events, 20 minutes to lower priced shopping and gasoline in North Augusta, and a Dunkin' Donuts, Chik-fil-a, and a Five Guys on the "I've got a dream" list.

corgimom
38820
Points
corgimom 02/03/14 - 04:56 pm
1
1
Countyman, how do you know

Countyman, how do you know that the single people of the Cyber Command won't live in CC?

You have no way of knowing that. None whatsoever.

Augz79
1083
Points
Augz79 02/03/14 - 07:09 pm
0
0
Re: Countyman

Countyman:
* RC resident here, County. I just call 'em as I see 'em.
* The top (read: "magnet") schools you cite have waiting lists. Most RCBE students aren't fortunate enough to attend them.
* The best chance CC has for growth is realtors steering people away from RC? That's laughable. The realtor's obligation is to their client -- if their client wants to be closest to the most retail and restaurants and to schools they don't have to worry about sending their kids to, hell yeah they "steer" them to CC (or at least to the northwestern portion of RC)

Instead of doing your version of the Emperor has no clothes, acknowledge that RC has its challenges to overcome (challenges that can't be overcome by spouting press release talking points)

Augusta's #1 obstacle to growth is RCBE schools. Parents choose where to locate based on schools. All this other stuff -- Chick-fil-A's, etc etc.....South Augusta *is* slowly improving, but Augusta will continue to bleed growth potential to CC until RCBE fixes the school system. Mayoral candidates -- pay attention to this.

corgimom
38820
Points
corgimom 02/03/14 - 09:48 pm
1
0
It seems to me that if the

It seems to me that if the people in the Cyber Command are earning higher than normal wages, they will be more likely to buy houses for tax purposes and not live in apartments.

Back to Top
loading...
Search Augusta jobs