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Lula wants Hall County's help to pave dirt road

POSTED: June 22, 2009 10:54 p.m.

The Hall County Board of Commissioners will hear a request from the city of Lula at its work session this morning for help paving a dirt road that has been in disrepair since 2001.

Lula City Manager Dennis Bergin said he has been talking with Hall County Public Works for months about the possibility of getting the county to help fix the roads in the Victoria Lane neighborhood — Victoria Lane, Noah’s Way and Tara Trail.

"We’ve been talking to the county ongoing for sometime about the problems with that private property and they’ve shown a willingness to help participate to some extent," Bergin said.

Victoria Lane was built as a lease-to-own neighborhood of doublewide mobile homes nearly 10 years ago. The road was paved at first, but was torn up during construction after the property was sold to another developer, said Barry Wikle, the original owner.

The city of Lula never required a bond for the road, and it was never repaired.

The hilly road becomes nearly impassable in the rain due to mud and pot holes.

In January, Hall County schools stopped service in the neighborhood due to the dangerous roads, opting instead to drop off neighborhood children at County Line Road.

Though the road is in Lula, the city was unable to do anything to the road by law because it is private property.

Lula City Manager Dennis Bergin said the city is in the process of gaining the ownership of the roads.

"The way we’re able to overcome that is we’re able to get the fellow who actually owns the property to offer the ... ownership of that property to the homeowners and in turn they turned it over to us," Bergin said.

Bergin said if approved by the county commission, work could start on the roads as soon as late July.

"Primarily what they’re going to do is come in and create the ditch and bases for our future intentions to pave the roads," Bergin said.

Though when Lula would be able to pave the roads is uncertain.

"It depends on how close it gets to the end of the paving season and the resources we have available to us. Hopefully with any luck we’ll be able to go in there right away and do the paving," Bergin said.

After years of struggling with complaints from residents and no solution in sight, Bergin said it is a relief to know that the situation at Victoria Lane could soon come to a close.

"I’m elated," he said. "This has been a nightmare for us, because having to stay within the law understandably but at the same time seek a solution that would satisfy state law as well as bring some help to those folks out there."



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