April 5, 2014 8:20:42 PM
As Columbus councilmen mull funding mechanisms for capital improvements, two Lowndes County supervisors are looking to address infrastructural issues in their respective districts.
Supervisors recently approved two requests from District 4 Supervisor Jeff Smith. Both involve resolutions asking for assistance from Tombigbee River Valley Water Management District to assess drainage issues in two subdivisions in his district.
The first was to ask TRVWMD to help clear a ditch on Swedenburg Circle that has become so clogged with shrubbery and tree limbs that it causes a flooding issue for around 50 residences, Smith said.
"The debris has got that whole ditch dammed up," Smith said. "It is affecting the roads inside that subdivision. That area is prone to flooding anyway and with additional debris laying on the ground, it makes it even more difficult for the drainage in those properties."
The same problem is occurring on Granderson Drive off of Nashville Ferry Road and is affecting 12 homes there and causing a health issue, Smith said.
Lowndes County public works crews cannot fix the issues themselves because both issues are on private property. The county has a contract with TRVWMD, which is allowed to do that work on private property.
Supervisors will open bids from contractors for a paving and road widening project on a one-mile stretch of Old West Point Road on May 15. County engineer Bob Calvert estimated the work to be in the $1 million range. That project has been slow to progress due to reluctance from landowners to grant the right-of-way required for the county to use state aid road funding, District 5 Supervisor Leroy Brooks said.
"That road is getting to be one of the worst in the county. It's like a rub board," Brooks said. "You've got a large residential area over there and it's a key thoroughfare. At some point, the county has got to make a commitment to put in some local money. That needs to be a major concern of this entire board."
The one-mile portion of the seven-mile road that will receive work begins at Younger Road and ends at West Bank Access Road, Calvert said. The project also involves the installation of a new culvert.
Nathan Gregory covers city and county government for The Dispatch.
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