Though construction is several years away, the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) recently held an open house in west Forsyth for residents to learn more about a Post Road (State Route 371) project that will widen the road from two lanes to four.
On Thursday, GDOT took comments and answered questions from residents at an information session hosted at Vickery Creek Elementary School, which is located off Post Road.
The project, which will be broken up into two phases, will widen the road from Atlanta Hwy. (Hwy. 9) to Kelly Mill Road and from Kelly Mill Road to Canton Hwy. (Hwy. 20), totaling 6.02 miles.
According to GDOT’s website, the proposed design includes an additional lane in each direction with a 16 to 20-foot raised median. On the west side of the road, “the proposed shoulder will be a 12-foot urban shoulder containing curb and gutter and a five-foot sidewalk.”
The east side will have a “14 to16-foot urban shoulder containing curb and gutter and an eight to 10-foot enhanced sidewalk. In addition, operational access at all intersections will be investigated to determine access and intersection control types.”
District 1 GDOT spokeswoman Katie Strickland said there are generally two reasons GDOT will take on such projects: for safety reasons or for traffic.
“It’s going to really improve the area,” she said. “The main thing that’s going on with 371/Post Road is congestion – I mean it is at capacity, and this joins two state routes.
“It’s a cut-through basically, or a bypass, for the city of Cumming, so when we have corridors like this, it’s very important to understand that after years of people moving in and the influx in population, a widening is going to be the next thing we have to do.”
Strickland added at least four schools are along the proposed project route, which is why having working sidewalks is important.
“Because there are schools along the way, we need to also consider that and make some good multi-use trails and sidewalk facilities also,” she said. “The design speed is going to be 45 miles per hour – that’s what it is already – and the biggest difference is there’s going to be operational access at the intersections so there will still be access for people to turn each way.
“That hasn’t been designed yet but will be something they are evaluating because they would have to have traffic studies done, which the county would have to do.”
Strickland said the county contributed funding for the design, though the project won’t go to construction until after 2024. The project is funded by House Bill 170 and is a state-funded project.
Residents have the opportunity to comment on the design through Oct. 20 by visiting dot.ga.gov/PS/Public/PublicOutreach and selecting the project: 0006915/0013965 - SR 371/Post Road Widening.