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Flowery Branch wants to resume effort to dress up roadway
Atlanta Highway project scheduled for completion on March 15
Flowery Branch is planning to sign an agreement with the DOT to begin a landscaping project along Atlanta Highway, the second phase of a project to landscape the main artery through town.

Flowery Branch is looking to continue a beautification effort along Atlanta Highway that it completed last year.

The South Hall city plans to dress up the main traffic artery from Chattahoochee Street south to the city limits near the city's sewer treatment plant.

City Council, meeting at 5:30 p.m. Friday at City Hall, is set to consider an agreement with the Georgia Department of Transportation, which is paying for the project through a $50,000 Transportation Enhancement grant.

"We're expecting bids to come in sometime by the end of the month for purchase and installation of the landscaping," City Planner James Riker said Wednesday.

The project's scheduled completion is March 15.

The first phase of the project, running between Waterstone Crossing subdivision at Vireo Drive to Thurmon Tanner Parkway, involved trees and other landscaping.

Riker said he is particularly impressed with the work done at Radford Road's intersection with Atlanta Highway.

The new phase of work will involve mainly the planting of low shrubs and some ground cover.

"That's a much tighter right of way than the other stretch," Riker said.

Funding for the grants comes from fees paid by outdoor advertising companies to the DOT for vegetation removal at outdoor advertising signs, according to the DOT.

The department stopped accepting applications for additional grant money last year because of a lack of funding. Overall, the DOT has awarded more than $644,000 in beautification grants along state routes.

If the state revives the program, the only other place where Flowery Branch could pursue a grant for would be at Interstate 985 and Phil Niekro Boulevard/Spout Springs Road, Riker said.

The city has been on a kick for several years to improve its downtown appearance.

It used a state grant to partially fund a project along Main Street between Church Street and Railroad Avenue that involved putting in new sidewalks, benches and ornamental streetlights.

The city has mostly finished a second phase to that project, by installing new sidewalks on Railroad Avenue, between Snelling Avenue and Main. Streetlights also will be installed along that stretch.

Such work, plus other projects, including demolition of an aging structure downtown as part of a developer's plans, have added up to a $2.1 million investment, Mayor Mike Miller said.

"With the future redevelopment of old town and new development potential in other parts of the city, Flowery Branch is well positioned to accommodate future growth," he said.


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