Columbus City Council to vote on 10th & 12th Street changes - WVTM-TV Birmingham, AL

Columbus City Council to vote on 10th & 12th Street changes

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COLUMBUS, Ga. - This week Columbus City Council will vote on a proposal that would change portions of 10th and 12th Streets in Uptown to two-way. The proposal would involve modification and installation of new traffic signals, traffic signs and pavement markings between Sixth Avenue and Bay Avenue for 10th Street, and between Sixth Avenue and Veterans Parkway for 12th Street.

The $400,000 proposal will help the flow of traffic out of town. Talks of this project have been going on for a year now. The city completed a study on 10th, 11th and 12th Streets in Uptown early last year, and determined the most-effective solution to some traffic concerns was to make 10th Street two-ways.

With the current flow of traffic, there are two ways to get into Uptown, but only one way to get out at 11th Street. During many of the events in Uptown, 11th Street is closed, diverting outbound traffic all the way to 9th, so Deputy City Manager David Arrington says another two-way street at 10th would help.

"It allows for better egress from the Front Ave, Bay Ave area during large events, and at any time actually," says Arrington. "It also gives the Fire Dept better access to Veterans Pkwy for responding to emergency calls. It meets the drivers' expectations."

He says drivers' expectations are an important factor. Even though the streets have been one-way for many years, he says drivers still make mistakes on a daily basis. "Many times out here we see vehicles turning the wrong way on one-way streets," Arrington says. "Fortunately many of these don't end up in accidents, but the driver's expectation is to have two-way traffic flow when they make that turn."

While 10th Street would be the main focus of the project, the 12th Street changes are still on the table because businesses like the Chamber of Commerce say two-way traffic helps their customers access them. St. Luke United Methodist Church wanted 12th to remain one-way, however.

Chamber President Mike Gaymon says he'd still like a two-way street to the Chamber, but it's not a necessary change. "
Really it's up to the city if they feel like going two-way just for two blocks, or whether to just leave it as it was," he says. "We're fine either way."

Arrington says once approved, it would take a couple months to complete the 12th Street portion of the project. 10th Street would take longer, as the city would have to wait for new traffic light poles.

If the project is approved, there will be road closures in the area during construction.

Jessi Mitchell

Jessi joined the WRBL news team in October 2012 after working as a freelance production assistant for MTV Networks in Los Angeles.

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