Brown Hill Road condition sparks concern
Published 8:46 am Wednesday, October 2, 2013
By Fred Guarino
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The Lowndes Signal
Facebook fans of the Lowndes Signal voiced concerns about a closed stretch of Brown Hill Road this week.
However, Lowndes County Engineer David Butts said the seven-tenth mile stretch of very rough road should be repaired and repaved in about a month. The Lowndes County Highway Department removed the pavement and closed about a seven-tenth mile stretch of Brown Hill Road (Lowndes County 54) in the Lowndesboro area. However, Butts said the road should be fixed before cool weather sets in. “Brown Hill has been torn up for three months. The county did this to fix the road and never came back to fix it. We called and were told it takes time and money to fix this. Well, they took the time too tear it up. So, why not at least grade it where it’s drivable. We pay county taxes to help the county not to give pay raises…” That was a post from Jason Goolsby on The Lowndes Signal facebook page. He also posted, “They tore up all the asphalt. So, it is (a) closed and very rough road. But all they have to do is grade it. Neighbors got fed up with it being closed and started using it.” Carmen Raybon Gray posted, “I had to use it the other day and it about tore my car up!! Check engine light has been on ever since! Ridiculous!!!” William Arthur posted, “One hour of grade work and it would be in shape for driving!” Jamie Judge posted, “I went down it the other day. IT IS VERY BAD!” George Elijah Jr. Posted, “Okay, I could go on all night about hundreds of things in District One, but I am through thinking about it… But when somebody from Montgomery comes… into Lowndes County one dark night and hits that county road… and gets killed, somebody will listen!” Butts said, “What we’ve got is, down in the bottom we had a real bad section because of drainage problems and things like that. So, the road was in bad shape.”
Butts said the project is not a county project, but rather Commission Chairman Robert Harris’.
“So, what Commissioner (Commission Chairman Robert) Harris is doing… It’s not a county project, it’s a commissioner’s project,” Butts said. “So, he went in there, and we took the asphalt off, and we’re going to dig out the bad areas, put some good material in, re-grade it and then pave it,” However, Butts explained, because this is a commissioner’s project, “We’re only working on it on the days that we are in his (Harris’) district. So, that’s why it’s taking so long.” Harris confirmed Butts’ explanation, stating that the county is working on the road only when its road equipment is in his district. Butts said Brown Hill is “just not a road that the county as a whole sees fixing.” So, he said, “(Harris) is going to do that out of his discretionary money.” Butts said the county closed the road section because there was only one house in the area. “Local traffic can use it. I mean it’s not where you can’t use it, but we don’t want through traffic,” he said. While he said the road is not impassable and people do drive on it, he said barricades were put up because, “We don’t want traffic on it because if an accident happens because it is not really prepared to be driven on… we don’t want to be responsible for the accident. That’s why we closed the road.” Butts said the county is hoping to get the project finished “before the cool weather gets in. So, in the next month or so, we should be finished with it.”