I-16 flyover, ramp removal project meeting at the Civic Center

I-16 flyover ramp removal project meeting at the Civic Center
Published: Oct. 15, 2015 at 9:10 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 16, 2015 at 3:13 AM EDT
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CHATHAM CO., GA (WTOC) - What would Downtown Savannah look like if I-16 didn't bring traffic onto Montgomery Street?

A public meeting was held at the Civic Center to show people the different options of what it will look like if they eventually remove the I-16 flyover ramp into downtown.

"We have two options that were explored tonight. Option one maintains the ramps, they just come in at a different location. They come in on Cohen Street, so you would still access the interstate in a very similar way, it just would simply be further to the west. The second option, option two has the ramps basically pushed a little bit further back to Gwinnett Street," said Ellen Harris, MPC Director of Urban Planning and Historic Preservation.

This is a very slow-moving project, meaning it could be years before we see anything happen because this has to go through a federal process.

It's a project that will restore and revitalize the old West Broad Street. Removing the I-16 flyover that runs over Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard will free up about nine acres of land to be used for commercial and private business. It will also help with traffic issues.

But regardless, this is a $70 million project that some believe could be spent over the next couple of years.

"For me it's not decided yet. And looking at those costs, I would much rather spend that money on public safety and other ways versus that but then again this is a public decision and it will be made by the people," said Alderman Tony Thomas.

The total cost of the project will be shared with the federal government but it's unclear how much money the county and city would have to pay.

To participate in a survey on the project, click here.

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