Downtown Valdosta may be too crowded for trucks -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Downtown Valdosta may be too crowded for trucks

(WALB image) (WALB image)
(WALB image) (WALB image)
Mike Orenduff (WALB image) Mike Orenduff (WALB image)
(WALB image) (WALB image)

There's a lot revitalization going on in downtown Valdosta, but one problem still bothers business owners. Trucks continue to roll through constantly, but the city and county are one step closer to a solution.

The sound of trucks rumbling through downtown Valdosta is a sound business owners say they hear all too often. "It clogs up the traffic and sort of discourages people from looking for parking places on the streets when the trucks are there," said Mike Orenduff.

With truck traffic projected to rise, the Southern Georgia Regional Commission is working towards a solution. Last month they came up with multiple options to move trucks out of the downtown area. Now, they plan to reveal one more alternative. "Kind of a hybrid alternative that we have not even considered before," said Transportation Director Corey Hull.

It will combine the different route options to mitigate truck traffic. They are also considering both short and long term options. "Short term they discussed developing Savannah Avenue as a truck route. Longer term options are developing a full bypass," Hull said.

Mike Orenduff recently opened his business downtown, and says noise isn't the biggest issue. "I'm not sure quiet is what people are looking for when they come downtown. I mean they don't want raucous noise! But then it's not a library."

He argues safety is a bigger concern, and transportation officials agree.  "They go up on the curbs and destroy the curbs over time. There have been, in the past, crashes and things like that," said Hull.

"Everybody would be happier. They would be happier and the people downtown would be happier if they had a good way to get across to the other side," Orenduff said.

The community is invited to view the new plan and give feedback at an open house Tuesday from 5 to 6 at the Southern Georgia Regional Commission office.

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