Part of bypass to open Wednesday; section near Roscoe Rd. will take longer
By SARAH FAY CAMPBELL
A short section of the Highway 34 Bypass in Newnan is set to open to traffic on Wednesday.
According to the Georgia Department of Transportation, the section of the bypass between Bullsboro Drive and the bridge over the CSX Railroad will open Wednesday. The traffic signal at Postal Parkway and the bypass is currently in “flash mode.” It must flash for seven days before it can go into full operation.
The section of the bypass between Bullsboro Drive and U.S. 29 is essentially complete, and has been for quite some time, but it can’t be opened to traffic until the new traffic signals are operational.
The other signal on that section of the bypass is at Hillwood Circle. Crews have been out in the past several days working on getting that light ready.
David Spear, press secretary for GDOT, passed along details from personnel with GDOT district three.
“Atcheson Electric is currently working to get the signal at Hillwood Circle East ready for inspection,” according to GDOT. “Once it is ready for inspection, traffic operations will come and inspect, and, if it passes, we will start the flash period.”
The signal will flash for seven days, and then go into regular operation.
“Once the light is turned on, I do not know how soon Sunbelt will open traffic between U.S. 29 and the CSX bridge, but I imagine it will be fairly quickly because the paving is complete through there,” the GDOT official said, referring to the general contractor, Sunbelt Structures.
Opening the rest of the bypass to traffic will take longer.
While the section from Highway 70/Roscoe Road to Highway 16 West/Carrollton Highway is also basically complete, except for the traffic signal, there is some road construction work to be done between Highway 70 and U.S. 29. A significant stretch of the right-hand, eastbound lane hasn’t been paved — it’s still the original roadway, and there is one section near the intersection with U.S. 29 that is still gravel.
That section “was held up for a bit while waiting to consult” with GDOT’s design division on a planning error, according to GDOT personnel.
“Sunbelt claims the pavers will be back in on Wednesday or Thursday of next week to finish the section between” Highway 70 and U.S. 29, the GDOT official said.
The project was originally supposed to be completed on Dec. 31, 2011. The contractor received a contract extension through Jan. 27. Starting Jan. 28, damages were assessed for failure to complete the project.
The base damages are $1,000 per calendar day for each day the project is not complete. There were also additional damages, of $1,000 per day, assessed for delays in completing the intersection of the bypass and Bullsboro Drive.
The penalties are subtracted from future payments the contractor will receive for the project, said Spear.
The original contract amount was $23,196,355.