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Residents Concerned Trash Traffic Would Spur Wrecks on Highway 20

Loganville Community Activist Herman McCart said trucks from a proposed sanitation business on Highway 20 could spur wrecks at the intersection of McCullers Road like one that took place on Tuesday.

Loganville community activist Herman McCart has been campaigning against a rezoning that would bring a sanitation company to the corner of Highway 20 and McCullers Road in Walton County. He said an accident that happened on the opposite corner on Tuesday afternoon is a perfect example of why he felt the need to embark on this campaign.

“There was a Wreck at 3:30 today (7 Feb 2012) at the Hwy 20 at McCullers Rd intersection - where Walton County is to vote on allowing Southern Sanitation Waste Collection to park 10 and up to 15 waste collection trucks over on the opposite corner lot,” McCart said. “This is already an unsafe intersection and Southern Sanitation Waste Collection Trucks will only make it more unsafe.”

McCart took photographs of the wreck and circulated them to concerned citizens who he has been keeping abreast of developments with the project.

According to the rezone application, Buddy Johnson has plans to take a foreclosed property of about 3.8 acres, at 5395 Georgia Highway 20, Loganville, and use it as an office with additional outdoor storage for equipment. This would be for his business on Rosebud Road in Gwinnett County - .

Johnson there are no plans for a transfer station at this location. It is to be used as a company office and light maintenance on the trash haulers that will be parked there when not in use. McCart had helped lead the charge last year to prevent Johnson and Timmy Shelnutt develop a waste transfer station at another property on Highway 20 just behind North American Tree.

After several County Commission and planning meetings, the voted to deny the rezoning necessarily for the project to go anywhere. The Planning Commission hs approved the plan, but it was shot down by the Board of Commissioners after a study by the Northeast Georgia Regional Commission. The study concluded the proposal was inconsistent with the land use and would have a negative impact on the nearby environment.

Johnson’s new plan had several self-imposed conditions by the applicant and the Planning Commission added several more of their own. However, at the Feb. 2 meeting they decided to postpone a vote on the application until the March 7 meeting. In the meantime, there will be a community meeting on this matter at 7. p.m. Thursday, Feb. 9, at the Loganville Courthouse, 2nd floor, 605 Tom Brewer Road in Loganville.

Walton County District 2 Commissioner Chuck Bagley said the meeting is being sponsored by the law firm of Smith, Gambrell & Russell with Dennis Webb Jr. presiding.

“The purpose is to answer questions and present facts regarding the rezoning request,” Bagley said.

The following are the self-imposed conditions submitted by Johnson should the rezoning be approved.

1.    There shall be no waste transfer station or solid waste landfill on the Subject Property;

2.    The Owner shall not wash out the refuse hoppers located on the rear of the refuse trucks while said trucks are on the Subject Property.  The Applicant shall be permitted, however, to wash the exteriors and cabs of the refuse trucks while said trucks are on the Subject Property;

3.    The Owner shall install Leyland Cypress on the Subject Property for the purpose of creating a vegetative screen. The Leyland Cypress shall be planted in two (2) locations: (a) along the western side of the Subject Property, starting north of the existing driveway onto McCullers Road, as depicted on the boundary survey prepared for “DAB Properties” by Alcovy Surveying and Engineering, Inc., dated December 29, 2011 and submitted with the application (the “Survey”); and (b) along the northern boundary of the Subject Property where it abuts tax parcel C0060026000;

4.    The Owner shall create and maintain a vector control plan on the Subject Property, said plan detailing the program for domesticated animal control as well as rodent and insect extermination. An outside exterminating company shall be utilized to exterminate insects and rodents and said service shall be provided on a monthly basis and increased as situations warrant; and

5.    The Owner shall be entitled to use the already developed Subject Property “as is” and in the configuration reflected on the Survey, with the exception that Owner may be required to install storm water management and water quality features on the Subject Property.

Grant February 08, 2012 at 12:50 PM
A parking lot for a few trucks is NOT gonna be any sort of contributor to car accidents . Seriously , if thats the best/only argument against this proposal it should be approved immediately .
Involved Citizen February 08, 2012 at 02:06 PM
Grant - it's not the parked trucks that will be the problem. This intersection is not your typical highway with a cross-street. The cross-streets are off-set. You turn right out of one, go approx. 1 1/2 car lengths and then turn left into the other one. In addition, there is another street that feeds into Highway 20 at this same intersection so you have to deal with folks who are turning left out of this street also. In addition to this distraction, there is a convenience store on this corner which has a steady stream of landscape trucks; some with, some without trailers. There are also tanker trucks trying to get in and out of this gas station parking lot. There is also a body-shop and an automotive repair shop both of which have steady tow truck traffic who also contribute to the oversized vehicle traffic in this busy corridor. After you negotiate all of these oversized vehicles, you have to deal with the trailer park residents; their neighborhood sits directly behind the convenience store. Oversized garbage trucks trying to turn in and out of their facility in the middle of this already difficult set-up are going to cause accidents. They are going to make it even more hazardous for people trying to make turns into and off of Hiwy 20 & the 3 side streets, into the convience store and trailer park. This is NOT the place to build this facility. Case Closed.
Grant February 08, 2012 at 03:51 PM
concerned writes "Oversized garbage trucks trying to turn in and out of their facility in the middle of this already difficult set-up are going to cause accidents" Why? Are they invisible? I didnt see anything about invisible trucks? I suppose suggesting that you folks hang up the phone and drive it just silly? It's a parking lot , either get over your invented manufactured Outrage" or come up with something sensible to support you position against it, the spectral "it'll cause accidents" garbage is unfounded nonsense .
Involved Citizen February 08, 2012 at 06:38 PM
Grant, you don't even have a dog in this fight. You don't live around here and you won't be affected by any of this. Why don't you stop with the arrogant know-it-all pot stirring and leave this to the residents in the area to worry about?
Grant February 08, 2012 at 06:44 PM
I actually do live fairly close AND I travel that road often...not that any of that is required for me to comment . If indeed you expect people to believe your assertion that a parking lot with a dozen garbage trucks in it is somehow detrimental to public safety and indeed a sign of the Mayan apocalypse might I suggest you come up with something other than your "the sky is falling" opinion? I'd contend the constant flow of cars in and out of the gas station is far more of a traffic concern than a parking lot .
David Binder February 08, 2012 at 09:25 PM
I travel that road daily. I've lived withing walking distance for 12 years. Sure that intersection gets it's share of accidents. 1) Show me an intersection on Hwy 20 that doesn't. 2) Yesterday's accident was on the opposite side of the intersection 3) Hwy 20 is a State Route designed as a cut through for commercial traffic 4) Sanitation trucks will not have to necessarily have to zig-zag to make the turn. They can plan their routes to make a simple left or right. 5) I would rather see a viable, tax paying business there than abandoned businesses (including the BP station) that attract possible rodents, other pests, & vagrants. Mr McCart, this IS my neighborhood. Is it yours ?
Involved Citizen February 08, 2012 at 11:10 PM
Grant writes: "Why? Are they invisible? I didn't see anything about invisible trucks?" No - that is pretty much the point. They are OVERSIZED trucks which obscure the view of the other drivers. And - not that I am judging anyone, but if you're driving a sanitation truck, chances are that you are not necessarily the sharpest knife in the drawer. I am sure that these folks are trained, but I personally watched a driver roll a garbage truck over on it's side in my own subdivision one sunny summer afternoon because he took a corner too fast. The simple fact is that Hwy. 20 is a busy, mixed use highway. There are residential neighborhoods all along this road from Conyers to 78. The subdivision my son lives in is right in a sharp, uphill, blind curve between Sharon Church Road and the proposed location for this business. He takes his life in his hands every afternoon when he tries to turn left into his neighborhood because folks are racing up highway 20 and when they come out of the curve they're blinded by the setting sun. There is no turning lane and he has come so close to being rear ended so many times that he goes two streets up, turns around and comes back to make a right into his subdivision.
Involved Citizen February 08, 2012 at 11:15 PM
...continuing from above The simple fact is that I oppose this business not only because of the increased truck traffic but also because I don't want stinky, smelly garbage trucks in my back yard. I don't want them sitting there leaking oil all of the exhaust. I don't want them washing the outside of the trucks because even though they say they won't wash out the backs, you know that when they are washing the outside, water will get into the back and some of that sludge will leak out. This property borders the watershed. I don't want my water polluted. Yes, Mr. Binder - this IS MY NEiGHBORHOOD too. I care about my environment. I care about my safety. I care about the aesthetics. I oppose this business moving here. I guess my mantra is, not in my back yard.
David Binder February 09, 2012 at 12:40 AM
Ok. Opposition noted. Thank you.
Grant February 09, 2012 at 01:40 PM
See what you did there ? You offered your real reasons for opposing the parking lot as opposed to the "everyone is gonna crash into a garbage truck" "garbage" that you invented. I think you should certainly attend tonight's meeting , voice your REAL concerns and see what sort of answers you get

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