I was unable to attend the meeting concerning the “realignment” of Berckmans Road, but have followed the process of the proposed changes in The Augusta Chronicle.
I am amazed with this whole activity. At one of the initial meetings, the traffic engineers stated that the reason was because of congestion on Berckmans – which floored me. I travel Berckmans a minimum of twice a day, and the only congestion is during Masters Week. Otherwise, it is a nice drive.
Now it is stated that the change is to move people to west Augusta. No reason is given for a need to move people to west Augusta. At the first meeting, the engineers stated that any new traffic light has to be evaluated for a rotary before the state would allow a new light. Now they want to move the Berckmans light to the River Ridge Drive location.
When is the evaluation for the rotary being done? Speaking of rotaries, why even consider one at Ingleside Drive? That traffic light works very well, and a rotary will only cause more problems than it could solve. A light is there now, so the state does not have any reason to force a change.
Also, what happens to the people who want to get into National Hills Shopping Center? That will become a real bottleneck, or the River Ridge Drive will become the new entrance and cause more problems. Since Alexander Drive has a railroad crossing before it connects with River Watch Parkway, how will the change in Berckmans speed any movement of vehicles in either direction?
The lies just get bigger every day. A simple widening could and would provide more for less. Again, our tax dollars are going for something that only aids a few when there are many other projects that need attention immediately.
Richard J. Stuhler