Board adopts Rock Quarry Road widening agreement

Photo of bridge on Rock Quarry Road over the railroad (staff photo)

Right of way acquisition for the widening of Rock Quarry Road can now proceed forward after Henry County adopted an agreement with Georgia DOT during the commission meeting on December 1. The item was previously tabled in August.

The widening project extends between Eagles Landing Parkway and North Henry Blvd / SR 138 supporting improved connection with Piedmont Henry, the county’s sole hospital. Total costs have been estimated at $35.5 million.

The right of way agreement between Georgia DOT and Henry County states the county shall acquire necessary right of way for the project with up to $5.6 million in costs reimbursed by the state. The county is expected to contribute $1.68 million in costs, or any amount over the state’s contribution. Henry County was awarded federal transportation funds for the state’s portion in 2018.

The project is estimated to require right of way from eighty-one (81) properties with one residential displacement. The right of way width is projected to increase from an existing 50–100 feet to 100–150 feet.

Henry County has a pending application for federal dollars towards construction. The start of construction is dependent on the project receiving the federal funds. Once started, the estimated construction time is two years.

The project plans to construct four travel lanes with a twenty-foot raised median. Restricted crossing U-turn (R-CUT) intersections will be provided the length of the corridor, except at signalized intersections and the rock quarry. A sidewalk and multi-use path will also be provided.

A five-lane cross section with a center turn lane was ruled out as a possible alternative because the design year average daily traffic (ADT) exceeds the ADT allowed (ADT 30,175 > 24,000) for a flush median. The flush median option provides less safety at intersections than the preferred alternative due to the inability to provide R-CUT intersections.

$8,750,000 is budgeted in SPLOST V district IV to provide a local match towards right of way acquisition and construction. Previously, $400,000 was budgeted in SPLOST IV for a local match towards preliminary engineering.

The widening of Rock Quarry Road is the most expensive district IV project budgeted in SPLOST V. The second-highest line item, a new park and park upgrades, equals $7.8 million. The district has shared projects with district III on East Lake Road and $1.3 million for resurfacing to round out its project list.