Mayor addresses Savannah Highlands traffic rumors

Benton Boulevard and Highlands Boulevard in the Savannah Highlands Community..
Benton Boulevard and Highlands Boulevard in the Savannah Highlands Community..(WTOC)
Updated: Oct. 14, 2020 at 6:18 AM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah Mayor Van Johnson has sent a letter to the Georgia Department of Transportation seeking answers on the future of Benton and Highlands boulevards in West Chatham County.

Trucks of all sizes come roaring down Bay Street both day and night. But one area of the city where you won’t see commercial traffic is the area of Benton Boulevard and Highlands Boulevard in the Savannah Highlands Community.

Savannah Highlands is the fastest growing community in Savannah. With lots of residential development popping up, this area is seeing a lot of families moving in.

Chatham County crews are currently working on an extension project that would connect Benton to Highway 30, which would add more traffic to this area. But the city is already working on widening a section of Benton Boulevard to help alleviate some of the future traffic issues.

Right now, the city is able to enforce a truck ban on these two busy roads because they are city-owned. But Mayor Johnson says he has heard the state may be trying to take those roads over to lift the ban, especially once Benton Boulevard connects to Highway 30 in Port Wentworth.

“It takes 35-40 minutes every morning to get out of that area anyway, can you imagine? And now, they want to allow trucks to pass through the area and that’s unacceptable to us,” said Mayor Johnson.

WTOC asked the mayor about his letter to GDOT during Tuesday’s media update.

“This is my intentional request to find out what’s going on. I don’t want to deal with rumors. If this is something you are planning on, we want to know about it. We’ve tried hard to partner with the state. My letter is indicative of our desire to know the truth,” said Mayor Johnson.

According to city documents, the city already sent a letter to GDOT in February but has yet to receive a reply.

WTOC will keep you updated on any new developments.

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