The project would actually improve traffic flow (according to the Georgia Department of Transportation), add dozens of acres to the private tax rolls, and add hundreds of yards of valuable street frontage in a neighborhood that was literally decimated by the construction of the flyover.
No, the removal won’t create a glorious neighborhood overnight.
But, yes, the project would essentially recreate the original street grid in the southwest portion of the Historic District — and we know that will be better than the blight and eeriness that surrounds the current terminus of I-16.
The Savannah Morning News is reporting tonight that the project has been added to the list for the so-called TSPLOST, a 1% sales tax that voters will decide on in 2012. The TSPLOST is going to face enough time, especially if the vote is on the same day as the Republican primary, but the vote stands a better chance with the inclusion of this project as well as a couple of bridges over rail lines in Garden City.
From Eric Curl’s piece:
The funding provides enough to tear down the overpass and make minimal road improvements, but another $36 million is needed to restore the original street layout, as intended.
The remaining funds could be found elsewhere, Shay said.
“If you do get something like $22 million, you take that as a bird in the hand, but also look to other sources and say this is real, you can invest in it,” he said.