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Transportation projects focus of summit
Event set for Oct. 8 at conference center

SOUTH FORSYTH — Traffic, one of the biggest complaints in Forsyth County, will be among the issues discussed at an upcoming event organized by the local chamber of commerce.

Set for 11:30 a.m. Oct. 8 at the Lanier Technical College Forsyth Conference Center, the annual Transportation Summit is an opportunity for residents to hear from experts and share their concerns about local roads, congestion and projects.

“The idea behind it originated in that there were a number of transportation projects out there that the community really ought to be involved in, and knowledgeable of, and there really was no clear path for how to discuss those transportation projects,“ said Jason Mock, director of small business services for the Cumming-Forsyth County Chamber of Commerce.

Speakers from across the state plan to participate.

“[State] Rep. Mark Hamilton [of Cumming] is going to serve as the moderator of the event, the DOT commissioner for the state of Georgia, Keith Golden, will have some opening comments,” Mock said.

“Bayne Smith, who up until very recently was our district engineer, he’s now the head of state field operations, has agreed … to come speak about state-level projects that are going on in the community.”

The gathering also will hear from County Commissioner Brian Tam, who will talk about the transportation bond referendum that’s on the Nov. 4 ballot. There will also be a question and answer session at the end of the event.

“Brian Tam, who is the head of the transportation committee for the Forsyth County commission, is going to deliver a presentation on the $200 million bond package that would widen Ga. 400,” Mock said.

“We’re taking 200 million dollars and leveraging another $93 million of state and federal money,” he said. “We [would be] able to accomplish as a community an awful lot of road-widening and transportation infrastructure improvement projects [if it were to pass].”

Held in conjunction with Forsyth County government and local Rotary Clubs, the summit is in its third year.

“We were approached by Commissioner Cindy Mills to work with Forsyth County, and the Rotary Clubs in the community to host this event, to really awareness about transportation issues that our community face in general, and opportunities within transportation infrastructure,” Mock said.

The event is free to attend; $15 if you want to include lunch.

“If folks want to join us for lunch, they need to register ahead of time,” Mock said. “The public is welcome. If they choose not to join us for lunch, they are welcome to just come and listen to the presentation.”