Thomasville approves controversial project to improve major perimeter road

By: Noelani Mathews | WCTV Eyewitness News
MAy 16, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- This week, Thomasville's City Council approved a controversial project on a major perimeter road.

The multi-million dollar project is for Pinetree Boulevard, from Magnolia to West Jackson Street intersections.

Wednesday, Bennie Brown Jr. caught up on yard work. His home for more than 25 years is next to one of Thomasville's busiest roads.

"Around 8 o'clock, 12 o'clock, and 5 o'clock it kind of gets busy," said Brown.

His home sits on a different side of Pinetree Boulevard, a part not included in the city's newly approved project.

"I'll be sitting on the porch all the time. Sooner or later I'm going to see a bad accident right there," said Brown.

Brown says the problems he sees are all the same, while driving both parts of Pinetree daily.

"Trying to go around someone in a no passing zone," adds Brown.

"It's a traffic issue," said David Hufstetler, city council member. "The traffic is heavy enough that these improvements dictate that."

Now, the City Council has taken action.

Three out of five voters approved an option that adds curbs and a gutter, sidewalks, and most importantly, a center lane.

Wednesday, dozens of picket signs with the number three inside a "no" symbol lined Pinetree Boulevard.

Those residents say the option only encourages more speeders.

"It's not adding traffic lanes. It's not three lanes," said Hufstetler. "It's the same two traffic lanes that have always been there with a center control or turn lane, whichever you want to call it."

Hufstetler is shutting down rumors. He says residents won't lose their private property to widen the road.

He says even independent studies show only positive feedback.

"Along with the roundabout at Magnolia, it would have substantial relief for the traffic," said Hufstetler.

The City Council says no start date has been set at this time.