Palmetto gets railroad underpass improvements

It was a while coming but in the end the project to refurbish the aging CSX Railroad underpasses in Palmetto was worth it. Among those at the Oct. 27 ribbon cutting at the Fayetteville Road underpass were (from left) Palmetto Councilwoman Lorraine Allen, Palmetto resident Mabel Reid, Sen. Donzella James and Palmetto Mayor John Miller.  Photo/Ben Nelms.

The work has been completed and the new look at the CSX Railroad underpasses in Palmetto provides a positive change to the visual landscape in the areas along U.S. Highway 29 in downtown Palmetto. Safety improvements to the underpasses came complete with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Oct. 27.

“It is with great enthusiasm that Palmetto announces the completion of safety improvements and maintenance on the three CSX underpasses located in downtown Palmetto, Georgia,” said City Manager Terry Todd. “We are thankful for the efforts of the state Department of Transportation, the Federal Railroad Administration and CSX Railroad for making this project become a reality.”

Todd said that in September 2010 the Palmetto City Council put CSX Railroad on formal notice of concerns to pedestrian and vehicular safety under these three structures.

“With the assistance of State Senator Donzella James, meetings were held between the city and the railroad to delineate responsibilities for the needed maintenance and improvements,” Todd said, noting that Georgia law is in place to protect the safety of citizens and require structural standards to be maintained at below-grade crossings. “Representatives from CSX quickly responded with appropriate commitments to restore the structures to protect the safety of vehicular and pedestrian traffic. A project outline was provided and all required improvements were performed by CSX. The city applauds CSX for their strong corporate citizenship.”

Palmetto also expects to accomplish aesthetic upgrades to the structures and envisions other pedestrian improvements in conjunction with a Community Development Block Grant and the historic train depot restoration, Todd said.

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