Public hearings about Vidalia traffic study set

Published 1:01 am Monday, January 29, 2018


Vidalia — The Vidalia Board of Aldermen will host two public meetings in the coming weeks to discuss the results of a state traffic study in the riverside district of town.

The Louisiana Department of Transportation conducted a traffic study concerning Riverside Street, Linden Street, Wilson Street, Carter Street, Concordia Avenue and U.S. 84.

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The study’s purpose is to determine areas in need of improvement following several complaints from residents, Mayor Buz Craft said.

Craft said several residents submitted concerns about trucks moving too quickly near Vidalia Upper Elementary School and in residential areas.

“At our request, they came in and looked at truck routes around the school and bridge,” Craft said. “They came back with requests and plans that might help those areas.”

The transportation department paid for the study, Craft said, and would pay for all recommended changes to Vidalia roads.

“The work is 100-percent paid by the State of Louisiana,” Craft said. “And all the proposals look good to me, but we want the opinion of the residents.”

The public meetings will be at 5 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 29, and Tuesday, Feb. 6, at Vidalia City Hall.

“It’s going to be very informal,” Craft said. “We just want to make it available for questions and let everyone look at the plans.”

The proposed plan would widen parts of Concordia Avenue, provide parallel parking on the north side of the road and create a walking and biking path on the south side of the road.

“Children walking or biking to school would have a safe area to go,” Craft said.

Craft said the plan also allots for “speed deterrents” in some areas.

Between Concordia Park and Carter Street, where a large paved area is currently, Craft said the department recommends creating a “green space” that would both decongest traffic and be aesthetically pleasing.

Many small green spaces are recommended, but the larger areas, Craft said, could include walking paths for residents.

“It seems like a win-win,” he said, “but I want to know how residents feel.”