The answer is final, Pumpkin Center: Not only is your intersection getting a roundabout, but your county commissioners are now supporting it.
Whether they want to or not.
At least it sounds that way. County officials, especially District 4 commissioner Scott Dean, consistently have opposed the Georgia Department of Transportation plan to revise the intersection of Wrightsboro Road and the Appling Harlem Highway, replacing the four-way stop with a traffic circle.
DOT representatives held a public meeting to show off their proposed roundabout design and received, to be charitable, a lukewarm response. None of the residents around the intersection want the roundabout, elected officials oppose it, and motorists dislike it.
But the DOT, in essence, said the federal government is footing the bill, and they're going to build it whether anyone likes it or not.
Columbia County Construction and Maintenance Division Director Matt Schlachter said the DOT recently asked to meet with county officials to discuss the project.
"They presented facts about the safety of roundabouts, operation of roundabouts, success stories of other roundabouts, and explained that the project would be 100 percent funded by the feds," Schlachter said.
That was the same sales pitch the DOT tried earlier. What was different this time was a none-too-subtle threat: because DOT engineers have decided a roundabout will work at the intersection, that's what they're going to build. If the county doesn't go along and the intersection ever needs any work, the DOT will build a roundabout then - but the county would have to help pay for it.
Call it an offer they couldn't refuse. "The commissioners have now agreed to support the project," Schlachter said.
Whether they, or county residents, like it or not.
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