Pulling off of Lakeview Drive onto Park Hill Drive in Gainesville is an uphill battle.
Wrecks near the intersection most often occur when a northbound motorist on Park Hill strikes a vehicle turning left from Lakeview Drive, said Gainesville’s traffic engineer Dee Taylor.
Taylor is seeking to alter traffic patterns in the area to make those wrecks happen less often.
The main issue, according to Taylor, is that motorists leaving Lakeview Drive must overcome a steep gradient before pulling into traffic on the four-laned Park Hill Drive.
It’s a problem compounded by the daily traffic surges coming from Lakeview Academy as students travel to and from school.
“When you’re pulling out from Lakeview, you’re kind of on the back side of a hill,” Taylor said. “You take your foot off the brake, and your first motion is going to be back(ward) in your vehicle, especially if you’re driving a stick shift. You have to overcome that negative energy of gravity to get going — it takes you longer to actually pull out.”
Taylor said residents have come to him with complaints about the traffic near the intersection.
As a result, Taylor is proposing to move the white “Stop bar” on Lakeview Drive further out toward Park Hill, allowing vehicles to overcome the hill before pulling onto Park Hill Drive.
He is also proposing blocking off the right lane of Park Hill Drive from its intersection with S. Enota Drive north to the Lakeview intersection.
He hopes the change might give motorists leaving Lakeview Drive more of an advantage when pulling onto Park Hill, but his proposal will first have to get a nod of approval from the City Council and then the Georgia Department of Transportation.
“You’re able to start on more of a level field there to make that left,” Taylor said. “In addition, you’re able to see a little bit better. You’re not as much in a hole, and you have one less lane of traffic to cross.”
Currently, Taylor says he is awaiting direction from the City Council on his design proposal.
The state Department of Transportation would then have to approve any changes to traffic on Park Hill Drive since it is part of a larger state route, Ga. Highway 11.