By David Fleet
Atlas Twp.- Funding for a mile section of Green Road on the township Goodrich boarder moved one step closer last month.
On Sept. 20 the township board of trustees voted 4-0 to apply for a Michigan Department of Transportation Small Urban grant to provide $385,000 for the partial funding of Green Road from Gale to Ridge roads. Ann Marie Moore, township treasurer was absent with notice.
An estimated cost for paving Green Road according to the Genesee County Road Commission is $1,200,000 for that mile section.
The road improvement will also require tree removal, ditching, culvert replacement and width adjustments at some point. The project does not include bike paths or sidewalks which could add more than $900,000 to the cost of the project.
“The township will lobby for sidewalks and pathways,” said Shirley Kautman-Jones, township supervisor. “If the road is to be paved, we will asked for a plan that includes a path. Residents should have a safe means to walk.”
The Ridge and Green roads area will soon have a new proposed village development coming to the area soon.
The sixth phase of Green Ridge Meadows by developer, Atlas Township-based Johnson & Sons Excavating will provide the space for 25 new homes on about 16 acres, with the average lot size of about 22,000 square feet. The project will connect to Green Ridge Estate phase 4 and include an entrance to Green Road.
“It’s a great strategic plan for the township,” she said. “We are going to have developed some kind financial plan to take this on, even if it takes several phases.”
Eric Johnston, director of engineering for Genesee County Road Commission attended the township meeting.
“We are looking for a way to fund Green Road to get it reconstructed to a paved roadway given the traffic counts,” said Johnston. “We have an opportunity to utilize our Small Urban funding.”
Traffic count is 1,200 to 1,400 cars per day on Green Road between Ridge and Gale roads, said Johnston. The speed study was done during the Memorial Day weekend in May 2021.
“The average speed was 45-55 mph,” he said. “That’s typical of what we see. The odd thing was during the Memorial Day weekend speeds went up to well over 60 mph. The highest speed was 87 mph and well over 50 cars were doing over 80 mph.”
“Driving that fast on gravel roads is dangerous,” said Kautman-Jones. “You can’t control a vehicle at that speed. There is so much dust, and the residents deal with that dust all year, you just can’t keep up with the road maintenance. We need a process that makes sense.”
In May, the township board of trustees voted to join the Genesee County Road Commission for an engineering and design agreement for a hard surface plan for Green Road from Ridge to Gale roads. The cost of the agreement was $70,000.