Georgia to build turn lanes for schools

Georgia to build turn lanes for schools

June 18th, 2013 by Tim Omarzu in Local Regional News

When school gets under way in the fall, it should be easier for Georgia parents to drop off and pick up their kids at an elementary school in Walker County and another one in Catoosa County.

The Georgia Department of Transportation this summer will have the turn lane extended on the south side of state Route 136 leading to Naomi Elementary School some four miles east of LaFayette in Walker County.

"I think they'll really be happy at Naomi," GDOT Area Engineer Devon Brooks said. "It tends to back up when people are picking up the kids."

About 12 miles south of Ringgold, Ga., GDOT will install a southbound turn lane on the west side of state Route 151 leading onto Colbert Hollow Road to make it easier to reach Woodstation Elementary School, Catoosa County Schools' newest elementary.

Principal Ernie Ellis is happy the turn lane is coming.

"Anything that can be done to improve safety ... everybody's all for it," Ellis said.

Both turn lanes fall in the category of what GDOT calls "quick-response projects," Brooks said.

The turn lanes are relatively quick and easy to build, Brooks said, because the work costs less than $50,000, the lanes are already in the state right-of-way, utilities don't have to be relocated, and the work doesn't require environmental clearances.

GDOT does such projects at local officials' request when they meet the criteria.

"It's just local requests; we try to be responsive," Brooks said.

Contact staff writer Tim Omarzu at tomarzu@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6651.