By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Eyes on the Road: Roads forum set for Thursday at UNG
Placeholder Image

The Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Transportation Forum is set for 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday.

The event will take place at the University of North Georgia-Gainesville’s Continuing Education Auditorium.

The forum is open to the public. The cost is $15 for chamber members and $20 for nonmembers and includes a boxed lunch.

Speakers are slated to include Georgia Department of Transportation Commissioner Keith Golden, DOT District Engineer Bayne Smith and Hall County Planning Director Srikanth Yamala.

Yamala also serves as director of the Gainesville-Hall County Metropolitan Planning Organization, Hall County’s lead transportation planning agency.

Typically, presentations will involve updates of ongoing and planned projects.

The biggest road project underway in Hall is the widening of Ga. 347 in two phases between McEver Road in Buford and Ga. 211/Old Winder Highway in Braselton. A third phase in the South Hall project will involve improvements to Ga. 347 between McEver Road and Lake Lanier Islands resort.

For reservations, call Joy Sims at 770-532-6206 or

DOT to hold public meeting on bridge project detour

The DOT plans to hold a public information open house Thursday to discuss the proposed detour in a Banks County bridge replacement project.

The project involves a new Ga. 63 bridge over the Broad River’s Middle Fork, 9-10 miles northeast of Homer.

The open house is set for 5-7 p.m. at the Banks County Courthouse Annex, 150 Hudson St., Homer.

DOT engineers will be available to discuss the proposed project and detour details. There will be no formal presentation.

The existing bridge was built in 1962 and does not meet current design standards. It is 304 feet long, 29 feet wide and does not have shoulders.

The new bridge will be 250 feet long and 40 feet wide, featuring 12-foot lanes and 8-foot shoulders.

The detour will allow construction to move about twice as fast as building a parallel bridge and allowing traffic to use the existing bridge until the new structure is complete, officials said.

The move also means a savings of at least $150,000.

The DOT had planned to hold the open house on Jan. 30, but winter weather concerns forced postponement.

DOT starting work on third bridge caisson

Construction crews have poured the second of 12 concrete caissons that will support the new Clarks Bridge on Ga. 284/Clarks Bridge Road at Lake Lanier.

The third caisson will be south of the two existing ones, closest to the existing bridge, and will be the largest one in the project, DOT District Construction Engineer Harold Mull said.

It is one of four that are 6« feet in diameter, requiring special cooling tubes to ensure the concrete cures to the needed strength, he added.

“Once cured, the cooling tubes will be removed and the tube voids filled with high-strength grout,” Mull said.

The $8.7 million construction project, awarded to E.R. Snell Contractor Inc. of Snellville, calls for construction of the new bridge over the Chattahoochee River arm of Lake Lanier at the Lake Lanier Olympic Center.

The new bridge will have 12-foot lanes and an 8-foot shoulder in each direction.

The project, which also calls for a new pedestrian tunnel under Ga. 284, is set for completion by Dec. 31, 2015.

The existing bridge, built in 1958, does not meet existing design standards.

Jeff Gill covers transportation issues for The Times. Share your thoughts, news tips and questions with him: