ACTC approves paving new Ridge Court Extension

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426

To Gatewood subdivision

By Stan Welch

After months of delays and patchwork repairs, the Anderson County Transportation Committee (ACTC) voted Tuesday to provide a half a loaf to Williamston, by agreeing to pave the temporary access to the Gatewood community.

The vote approved the expenditure of an additional $214,000 to pave the access that was created in response to the washout of the permanent entrance to the neighborhood. State and federal permit requirements, including an environmental impact statement (EIS), also contributed to the delays in making repairs. The total expense of the project now totals $425,000.

The town, in an agreement reached with the ACTC recently, will bear the expense of the EIS and will also have to reapply for funding for the originally planned repairs. What had developed into a bit of an impasse between the town, which asked for sidewalks and landscaping as a part of the second project, and the committee, several members of which clearly faulted the town for letting the original problem get so bad before addressing it, was resolved by the town Council’s vote to designate the secondary access road as a part of the town’s municipal road system.

At Tuesday afternoons special called meeting, ACTC chairman Ronnie Townsend read the ordinance, dated November 10 which declared Ridge Court Extension, the newly named road, to be a permanent part of the town’s system. That vote made it possible for the Committee to allocate the additional funds for the paving. The ordinance was accompanied by a resolution from the town council requesting the funding for the paving project.

The town is also tasked with obtaining a permanent right of way for a very small parcel of land belonging to Milliken. A temporary right of way is in place, and TransCo president Jeff Hildebran told the committee that he anticipated no problems, saying that Milliken seems very amenable to moving forward with the project.

Hildebran stated that work will begin next Monday, and the project should be finished by the following week. Earth Materials, the contractor currently on site, will simply extend the contract and complete the road. “We see no point in retooling and bringing in someone new at this point. Earth Materials is familiar with the project and are already in place.”

While the sidewalks and landscaping requests were stripped from the plan, the road will receive striping down the center and along both edges of the road, which will be fourteen inches thick when it is finished.

Townsend made it clear that the town will be back at square one in regards to funding for the original repairs, which include installing a large culvert to replace the cobbled together combination of culverts and drain pipes that washed out months ago. The summer and autumn’s historic rainfalls exacerbated the problem and even damaged the secondary repairs to a lesser extent.