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Tuesday September 1st, 2015 6:12AM

Plan to re-name Friendship Rd. goes before HCC this week

By Ken Stanford Reporter
GAINESVILLE -- A controversial plan to change the name of Friendship Road to Lanier Islands Parkway goes before the Hall County Commission this week.

The commission has scheduled first reading on the proposal, which does not have the backing of the county planning commission, at its regular meeting on Thursday.

Hall County Government initiated the proposal but Planning Commission Chairman Don Smallwood said at the planning board's Jan. 22 meeting he had received a letter with more than 400 signatures and just as many phone calls objecting to any change in the name. And, the planning commission voted to recommend against the change. A total of 13 area residents, some whose families have lived along Friendship Road for many generations, rose to speak against the change. Only two people spoke in favor of it. (See earlier story.)

The road, which is undergoing a widening and realignment, runs east from I-985 to to its terminus at Old Winder Highway.

The section of the road on the east side of the Interstate was changed to Lanier Islands Parkway several years ago.

In explaining his opposition, Smallwood said, "You've got to have concern for the folks. Personally, I also think this was a little far-reaching."

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