Ports, Garden City Officials Work Together on Buffer - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports


Ports, Garden City Officials Work Together on Buffer

Construction has begun on a buffer between the Georgia Ports Authority and homes along Highway 25 in Garden City. But that's not all: more changes are on the way after a meeting this afternoon. Today's meeting was just the first step in what residents and ports officials hope will improve the image of Garden City.

"We have wonderful neighborhoods, beautiful parks, flowers, trees, a wonderful recreation department, but when they think of Garden City, the immediate thought is trucks and trains," said city council member Bessie Kicklighter.

It's all a part of the Georgia Ports, which has frustrated nearby homeowners for years. But now ports officials are working with residents tearing up concrete and culverts. A Dumpster full of asphalt is a testimony to the start of a long-awaited buffer.

"The Georgia Ports Authority is committing $300,000 to build a buffer in the area, and Garden City residents deserve that," said Chatham County Commission member Dean Kicklighter.

Georgia Ports Officials say the buffer is just the first step in its commitment to work with citizens in beautifying their community.

"Our motto is Georgia's Ports for Georgia people, and that's really what we're about, to help Georgia's people," said the ports' Robert Morris.

And with the lines of communication now wide open, many hope the physical buffer between the ports and the people won't affect their face-to-face relationship in the future. "I believe this group can work together to beautify the area, to restore Garden City what it has been and what it can be," Dean Kicklighter said.

Ports officials say the buffer will be finished by next June. They will also be in charge of meeting quarterly with Garden City residents to give them an update on the progress and address other issues that may concern them.

Reported by: Melanie Ruberti, mruberti@wtoc.com

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