To the editor:
The city of Sandy Springs has the capability to protect the Long Island Creek watershed and widen the clogged and dangerous Hammond Drive corridor. This has been needed for more than a decade. If the merchants and service establishments along Roswell Road want to survive, they need to push for this (and other) road improvements.
Plus, the city of Sandy Springs needs to address the impassable I-285 eastbound exit for Glenridge Drive. In afternoon traffic, the entire exit is blocked by bumper-to-bumper vehicles (often backed up beyond Roswell Road) when 95 percent of these vehicles are trying to access Ga. 400 northbound or southbound. Typically, these cars will not allow cars to merge across the blocked lane to exit onto Glenridge Drive. Blocked drivers then sit, blinkers on, in the second lane from the shoulder, waiting on someone to allow them to cross through to the Glenridge exit ramp.
If you are trying to get to one of the hospitals or trying to exit for the many office buildings (including my office, which we own) accessed along Glenridge Drive north of I-285, you can spend 15 to 30 minutes to travel less than half a mile. Even with such a ridiculous and dangerous wait, merging is a dangerous, road-rage event because the other drivers think you are attempting to cut in line to go to 400.
Now Sandy Springs police officers are waiting on the Glenridge ramp and writing tickets for anyone using the shoulder to get to their destinations on time. Many of these frustrated drivers are blasting past other cars in the breakdown lane at 40 mph or more because they are late for appointments or have an emergency or their nerves are frayed. On May 20 about 5:15 p.m., I saw four cars pulled over by a single Sandy Springs officer. That single officer made the city about $500, and dozens more were sure to be ticketed after that group of drivers.
I live in and have worked in Sandy Springs for more than 13 years. I love the convenience of the city’s location but fully accept the reality that our city’s feeder highways, ramps and roadways must be widened and made accessible if we don’t want to drive away both businesses and residents.
These traffic problems will not go away. The city can prevent road rage and accidents and (by virtue of road construction) save the future growth of Sandy Springs, Georgia’s best city.
William C. (Bubba) Head