Pooler growth: Stop lights, waste water plant get upgrade - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Pooler growth: Stop lights, waste water plant get upgrade

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

If you want to make a list of Georgia's fastest growing cities, Pooler has been in the top ten for years.

Its population has more than doubled in the last decade, and some new projects are just the latest signs of the city's continued growth.

From those projects, though, comes a lot of traffic. It's become more of an issue for Pooler in recent years, especially near I-95.

"For so long we were the little city out here that had a caution light and that was it,” said Pooler Mayor Mike Lamb.

Now, Pooler is graduating from your everyday stop light. By the end of the year, "smart" traffic signals will be installed at nearly every intersection along Pooler Parkway.

These new signals will actually communicate with each other to improve traffic flow.

"We're trying to make it that when you get to a red light and you get the green light, we're hoping to have it, at least when the traffic is moderate, where you'll catch every light and go right on through, if possible,” said Mayor Lamb.

The city feels the quarter million dollar price tag is worth it. And that's not the only sign of Pooler's growth.

An upgrade to the city's waste water treatment plant is scheduled to start next month, too.

The nearly $5 million project is covered by state funds and includes new pumps, an updated filtration system, and - believe it or not - something called a "sludge digester."

"We sit here and we have to plan for growth, and Pooler is seeing a lot of it. So that's the whole reason why we're having quite a bit more waste water come to the plant,” said Hussey Gay Bell CEO Holmes Bell.

So much that the plant is nearing capacity, hence the upgrade. Waste water is recycled and used to water golf courses and sports fields. The engineers who designed the plant say that saves the city and taxpayers money.

"If we did not have this high technology that we have right now, we would be directly discharging into the canal. Pooler would get zero benefit from it,” said Bell.

The plant's upgrade will allow it to handle an additional one million gallons of waste water per day. The city's growing so fast, they've already started planning for a second expansion.

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