Troup County Commission eyes replacing subpar bridges

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 15, 2016

LaGRANGE — County commissioners are set to vote Tuesday on a bid to redesign replacements for three bridges in locations in Troup County.

If approved, the $198,500 bid by Marietta-based American Engineers would cover the cost of diagramming and planning new bridges on Hunt Road over Mud Creek, Mountville-Hogansville Road over Flat Creek and Stewart Road over Long Cane Creek.

Kevin Kinnersley, a roads department engineer, told commissioners Friday at a work session the need to replace the bridges was “serious or critical.”

The Georgia Department of Transportation inspects the county’s estimated 60 bridges every two years, and the three identified for replacement are the most in need, Kennersley said.

GDOT uses a “sufficiency rating” from zero to 100 to classify bridge integrity, with 100 being the best score. Kinnersley said the three bridges picked for replacement all rank in the 20s.

“Bridges are like everything else, they have have a limited useful life,” he said.

County-specific special-purpose, local-option sales tax would be used to cover the cost of bridge design and replacement.

Kinnersley said detours around the bridges during construction would be “minimal,” and that residents living in the area would feel little impact.

Corn maze public hearing set

Also on Tuesday, commissioners will hear additional comments concerning a special-use permit for rural tourism on Mobley Bridge Road. The owner of 33 acres at 1510 Mobley Bridge Road is requesting the permit to operate a seasonal corn maze with pumpkin patches and hay rides. A prior public hearing on July 5 saw many concerned residents voicing their opposition to the plan. Commissioners opted to vote to hear more public comments before making their decision. A vote on the special-use permit is expected Tuesday.

Hiring freezes may be lifted

In other business Friday, Probate Judge Donald Boyd requested commissioners lift a hiring freeze to replace a full-time, budgeted employee in the Probate Court office who is resigning. Parks and Recreation supervisor Don Howell also requested commissioners lift a hiring free to replace Mitchell Hill, longtime parks and rec employee and assistant center manager of the William J. Griggs Recreation Center. Hill died July 9 at the age of 47.

Commissioners are expected to vote on lifting their hiring freeze for both positions during their regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday at 9 a.m. at the Troup County Government Center, 100 Ridley Ave.

Also: Public hearing to continue on corn maze

By Tyler H. Jones

Tyler H. Jones is a reporter with LaGrange Daily News. He may be reached at 706-884-7311, ext. 2155.