The Georgia Department of Transportation today (Tuesday) released electronic versions of the five maps it unveiled March 28 at a meeting of the Oconee County Citizen Advisory Committee on the widening of U.S. 441 from Watkinsville to the Apalachee River.
Included were maps showing two alternate designs for the roadway through Bishop as well as three maps of the sections of roadway through Oconee County
At that meeting on March 28, GDOT officials said they were no longer considering a bypass of Bishop and presented the five maps to the Citizen Advisory Committee members as well as to a handful of other citizens present.
The state officials said that the only copies of the maps available were those shown at the meeting and that they were not able to release the copies to the public.
Release Of Maps
GDOT released the maps in response to an open records request filed by Michael Prochaska, editor of The Oconee Enterprise.
|Roundabouts On Either Side Of Bishop (Click To Enlarge)|
Prochaska told me yesterday that he had received the files from GDOT but was having difficulty downloading them. He asked if I would be willing to help.
I agreed, saying I, too, had asked for copies of the maps. I had not filed an open records request because I was told the maps were not with GDOT but in the possession of its consultant.
After I talked to Prochaska, I sent a message to Bruce Anderson, GDOT project manager, asking him to send me the files as well, since I had asked for them at the March 28 meeting.
I told Prochaska I would share with him anything I was able to acquire.
Kerrie Boyette, from GDOT consultant KCI, who had presented the maps at the meeting on March 28, sent Anderson instructions on how to download the very large files. Anderson forwarded those instructions to me.
Prochaska told me this afternoon that he also had been able to download the files.
Bishop Map Details
One of the files showing the roadway through Bishop includes roundabouts at Astondale Road and SR 186/High Shoals Road. A clip from that file is above.
I have put the complete file on box.net, and it can be downloaded HERE. All of these files are very large, so downloading takes patience.
A second file shows what GDOT is calling Florida-T designs at the Astondale Road intersection with U.S. 441 and at the SR 186/High Shoals Road intersection with U.S. 441.
That file can be downloaded HERE.
Maps Of Complete Route
GDOT released sheet 1 of the route, from the Apalachee River to Heritage Park, south of Farmington.
That map can be downloaded HERE.
Sheet 2 of the route is from Heritage Park to just south of Bishop.
That map is available HERE.
Sheet 3 is from Bishop to Watkinsville.
That map is HERE.
On all three maps, the purple route is for the railroad right of way.
I had made a video recording of all of these maps at the March 28 meeting.
March 28 Meeting
At the meeting on March 28, Bishop Mayor Johnny Pritchett voiced strong opposition to the decision not to bypass Bishop.
Except in Bishop, the highway would be four lanes wide. In Bishop, it would be three lanes wide.
For the whole route, the new road would follow the existing right of way.
To slow traffic moving through Bishop, consultants to GDOT are proposing the roundabouts, but the Florida-T was presented as an alternate.
The plans also include a pedestrian crossing in Bishop with a traffic light that is push-button activated.
The plans call for streetscaping in Bishop to make the roadway pedestrian friendly, for landscaping and for pedestrian lighting.