By the end of the year, Columbia County officials say a new traffic signal will help improve one Washington Road intersection.
The entrance to Old Evans Road at Washington Road was closed and diverted for several weeks during the construction of the Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse.
"We're hoping by Christmas they'll have a better way to get in and out of there," said Scott Herring, the county's Construction and Maintenance Division director.
The construction project redirected Old Evans Road from the west side of The Pizza Joint through the restaurant's former parking lot. Now that the redirected road is complete, a new traffic signal will finish off the construction of the intersection.
"The Georgia DOT has approved the signal permit, the materials are on order and we anticipate the signal installation by the end of November," said Kendal Jones, a vice president for Hull Storey. "But DOT will require a warning flashing light for two or three weeks so people get used to seeing the light there."
The intersection project, which includes diverting Old Evans Road and installing the traffic signal, was originally slated to be complete by early October. The utilities have been relocated and the light installation should be the last step in making the new intersection fully functional.
"We've always planned on it," Herring said. "We knew it was going to happen. It is just not happening as quickly as we like. But that's the nature of the beast with any type of road construction."
Jones said the final piece of the construction is to install the parking lot for The Pizza Joint on the west side of the restaurant, making more parking in the Lowe's lot available to restaurant patrons.
Jones said the Lowe's store, which is still under construction, remains on target for a January opening.
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