Roundabout coming to busy Lyons intersection

Published: Sep. 15, 2022 at 3:36 PM EDT
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LYONS, Ga. (WTOC) - A possible solution for, what’s considered, a dangerous intersection in Lyons is in the works.

The big project is what many in the community say is needed.

Around this time next year, the intersection of State Route 292 and Oxley Drive will look a lot different. The Georgia Department of Transportation announced plans to put a single-lane roundabout.

City leaders and community members said they’re looking forward to it because it’ll decrease the number of accidents they see happening there.

“The most important part of this for our local citizens is that it takes a very dangerous intersection, and it makes it safer,” Lyons City Manager Jason Hall said.

State Route 292 is known as the main thoroughfare between the City of Lyons and Vidalia.

“This becomes very congested at times,” Hall said.

With varying speed limits the further you drive in either direction.

“People are beginning to speed up and it really is difficult and dangerous to try and get out into that intersection,” resident Larry Griggers said.

Griggers said he drives through here every day and he’s seen a lot of accidents happen. When asked if he’s had a few close calls, he responded “Multiple times. Especially when you’re coming across from the railroad tracks.”

Hall said the city has had the intersection of 292 and Oxley Drive on their plans for years. But the best solution took time to sort out.

“Some of the designs that were considered were red lights, four-way stops, turning lanes. It came to the design for the roundabout, and it just made more sense,” Hall said.

Hall said the goal was that traffic never has to stop. A gas station, strip mall, pharmacy, a school, and a railroad all jut off from the intersection.

“After the construction most of the businesses will benefit from the increased traffic flow and the ease of traffic flow in this area,” Hall said.

The project is led by the Georgia DOT and is contracted out to McClendon Enterprises of Vidalia for $1.4 million. Hall said the bulk of the project is funded by local Transportation Investment Act funds.

“I think it’ll be awesome. It’ll move traffic quickly and people are just going to, once they get over the learning curve, love it,” Griggers said.

A learning curve because this will be the first roundabout in Toombs County.

“We’re excited to see it actually taking place now.”

Hall said a start date for construction hasn’t been set yet, but that it’s right around the corner. According to the Georgia Department of Transportation, the project is expected to be complete by the end of Summer 2023.