Those who frequent the U.S. 129 corridor between Hall and Jackson counties will have to wait a little bit longer for the completion of a nearly seven-mile widening project which has been underway for several years.
The $45 million project, which aims to widen the corridor to four lanes, is now scheduled to be completed in Feb. 2022, according to Natalie Dale, a spokesperson with the Georgia Department of Transportation.
The project was originally scheduled for completion in 2020 but was delayed to August 2021 due to issues with water-line relocation.
Like the delay that pushed the project into 2021, the most recent delay to 2022 was also the result of utility-related issues.
“It’s like dominoes, if a domino doesn’t fall, the rest of them don’t fall, that’s kind of how the schedule works,” Dale said. “As you’re moving these utilities, they need to be moved in a certain way for the project to proceed with other phases, portions of the project.”
Dale said contractor Pittman Construction Co. has also been dealing with weather-related issues.
“When you get rainy seasons, when you get big rainy months as we’ve been seeing, more so than not over the past year, there are certain parts of projects that have to be done in good weather conditions,” Dale said.
Dale said while she knows the length of the project may seem long to those who frequent the corridor, she believes it will be worth the wait.
“What this new road should bring is an enhanced level of safety to the corridor, an enhanced level of mobility, which is always what we strive for at the department,” Dale said.