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I-85/Hwy. 74 junction, East Bypass on 1st list for regional SPLOST funding

Having recently released a list of transportation projects for potential funding from a regional sales tax, area officials are hoping for feedback from local residents.

On Monday, June 20 at 6 p.m. a special “telephone town hall meeting” on the topic will be conducted by phone.

Several thousand residents will be called randomly and invited to join, but any citizen can participate by calling 1-888-886-6603 and entering PIN code 16723. The meeting is set to last one hour.

One of the proposed transportation projects that might help Fayette County the most isn’t even inside the county lines. It’s actually in Fairburn in south Fulton County: a proposed $22.5 million for interchange improvements at Ga. Highway 74 and Interstate 85.

That project, along with some $246.1 million in projects inside Fayette County, has to survive a political process in which 21 Atlanta-area mayors and county commission chairmen decide which projects would be funded by the sales tax. Representing Fayette are County Commission Chairman Herb Frady and Fayetteville Mayor Ken Steele.

A preliminary list of projects has been released by state officials. The interchange is on that list, as is construction of the East Fayetteville Bypass, which includes linking it to Ga. Highway 85 South.

There are a host of other proposed Fayette County projects that are eligible for potential sales tax funding.

Included are several new cart paths linking Peachtree City’s southside to the southern tip of the industrial park, along with the “gateway” path bridge over Ga. Highway 54 West.

In Fayetteville, one of the more significant projects is the realignment of Ga. Highway 92 South as it enters the downtown area. The county has already approved SPLOST funding for the project, but if it is somehow funded by the regional transportation SPLOST, it would free up funding for other local transportation projects.

Other major projects proposed for funding include:

• Widening Ga. Highway 85 South from Grady Avenue to Bernhard Road;

• Widening Ga. Highway 92 South from Jimmie Mayfield Boulevard to McBride Road;

• Widening Ga. Highway 279 from Hwy. 85 to the Fulton County line;

• ”Operational improvements” to Ga. Highway 92 North from Fayetteville to Oakley Industrial Boulevard in Fulton County; and

• The second phase of the MacDuff Parkway extension in Peachtree City that would link Ga. highways 54 and 74.

There are also several bridge replacement projects in the mix, including: McIntosh Road at the Flint River in south Fayette County and Kenwood Road at Morning Creek in north Fayette County along with Ebenezer Church Road at Whitewater Creek in central Fayette County.

Also remaining in contention for funding in Peachtree City is a new cart path that would reach from the new Flat Creek golf cart bridge up to Crosstown Road. This path would connect to a number of the city’s industries including Panasonic and Gerresheimer along with the Federal Aviation Administration’s air traffic control center.

Another path project in the running would connect the Flat Creek bridge westward to a tunnel underneath Ga. Highway 74 and a new path going north towards the southern end of the city’s industrial park and south to the city’s Baseball and Soccer Complex. This path would connect with businesses such as Cooper Lighting and SANY in addition to others.

Two road improvement projects also made the list for Peachtree City:

• Improvements to Ga. Highway 54 and Commerce Drive; and

• The second phase of extending MacDuff Parkway to Ga. Highway 74.

Tyrone projects included resurfacing for Castlewood Road, and also Palmetto Road, along with a multi-use path stretching along Tyrone Road from Hwy. 74 to Ga. Highway 54 near Fayetteville.

Based on the total amount of projects listed, Fayette County qualifies for some $246.1 million in projects inside the county boundaries.

Fayette County is projected to contribute some $205 million over the entire 10-year levy of the proposed tax.

Region wide, the tax is estimated to rake in some $8 billion over the 10-year period. If it’s approved by a majority of the region’s voters, that is.

But nearly $23 billion in projects remain on the list. So there’s a lot of cutting to do across the entire region.

The responsibility of paring down that list lies with the 21-member Regional Transportation Roundtable. Fayette County has two representatives on that group: former Peachtree City mayor and current county commission Chairman Herb Frady and Fayetteville Mayor Ken Steele, who is the current president of the Georgia Municipal Association.

The real power, however, rests with voters, who will be asked in June 2012 to approve the 10-year penny sales tax to fund the list of projects.

Steele and Frady have said they will wait and see the final list of projects before they determine whether they will support the sales tax initiative. The key, both have said, is to make sure that Fayette County is getting enough bang for its buck, as the saying goes.

The rub is that even if Fayette County voters shoot the tax down, the sales tax would be assessed here if it is approved by the aggregate of voters in the entire region.

The telephone town hall meeting is a part of the information gathering effort undertaken by the 21-member Atlanta Regional Transportation Roundtable, which will prepare a list of crucial regional transportation projects for potential sales tax funding.

The roundtable’s goal is to “come together and based on public input, create a robust list of transportation projects that will have a positive impact on families and businesses around the entire region,” said Roundtable Chairman and Norcross Mayor Bucky Johnson.



listen to the ARC town hall phone call @ 1-888-886-6603. Starts at 6pm and goes for an hour. If you want to speak also, punch in pin #16723.

This is about the SPLOST referendum.

PTC Observer's picture

Just called and got a fast busy

that we can get an audio copy of this call. I'll look into it and let you know what I find out.

I called in at about 5:50pm and got on que. Sorry you didn't make it. What has been said so far just reinforces the almost zero control we have over denial of this tax even if every voter in Fayette says NO.

(PS) I typed this with no glasses on, so excuse any typos!

PTC Observer's picture

Thanks, I appreciate your efforts on this.

counties the next 2 evenings.

Tomorrow evening-Tuesday June 21st...Rockdale County 6PM pin#16725

Wed. evening-Jun 22nd.......Fulton County 6PM pin#16727 AND

Clayton County 7:15PM pin#16728

Same phone # to call 1-888-886-6603

Here's a tidbit. No one on these calls asks or checks whether you live in the county on the call, so how many "plants" that don't live in Fayette have been calling in to these calls saying that they WANT mass transit? Just to influence others in that county into thinking the majority will want it, too. And to jack up the survey results that ARC is going to plaster in the local media to convince everyone we need this due to the "positive responses".

And if Ken Steele says one more time, "We don't have any plans for transit in Fayette AS OF NOW....." (At least 3 time he said "AS OF NOW" on this call.)

Here's my question, Kennie. "AS OF NOW", does that mean that for the 10 year life of this tax, this county could not redirect that tax money to projects that are not on the list being approved this year??? Like, say MASS TRANSIT??? Uhhhh, let me figure that answer out for all of us.

The only vote by voters in this county should be NO on this referendum.

For you to come on this conf. call and say that we NEED transit and NEED to look out for the other counties and that there are NO facts to back up higher crime at MARTA stattions such as College Park, you are so out of touch with what this county is all about....I almost upchucked listening to your comments.

mudcat's picture

Don't like him? Push him out. Clayton or South Fulton is where he belongs. He is not a Fayette Representative at all. Why is he here?

PTC Observer's picture

Well let's see.....Gerrymandering?

Robert W. Morgan's picture

There will be new districts drawn before the 2012 elections and both Chance and Ramsey have roles in that. Maybe we can get some strong logical lines drawn so that Fayette has consistent Republican representation - both state and national level.

Live free or die!

I listened in on the town hall and thought Virgil Flood made a lot of sense.

The Atlanta metropolitan area, like other successful metro areas, needs a good mass transit system. Fayette County's prosperity is certainly linked to the success of the Atlanta metro area as a whole. Whether Marta or mass transit in some form ever reaches Fayette County, we benefit from a good transit system in the metro area.

We should support transit that helps Fayette County residents and many of them work at the Atlanta Airport or in Atlanta proper and would be served by transit alternatives.

The old canard that mass transit brings crime reflects ignorance and racial fear. Mass transit does not bring more crime any more than paved roads, unpaved roads, or the automobile itself brought more crime.

Our policies should be based on a view to the future.


PTC Observer's picture

" other successful metro areas.."

Could you give us a list of these paragons of success?

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