Growth continues near the Freedom Field area in Houston County.

Within the last year, the part of the County near Freedom Field has seen the addition of streetlights, sidewalks, and now a new traffic light.

Local store owners say the area's growth has been great for business and has brought new businesses in.

At Sakari and Company, the new traffic light at their intersection of Cohen Walker Drive and Lake Joy Road is good news.

“Being in this location, we noticed that it was difficult for our customers to get here. It was just a weird intersection to be in. So, having that traffic light traffic is a little bit better and it's easier for people to get to our location which helps business,” said store manager Lily Ricketts.

She’s been with the company for a year, and a manager at the three-month old clothing store since it opened.

They opened off Lake Joy Road to expand from their existing location in Cordele. Ricketts said they picked this site, because of Houston County's growth.

Sakari and Company

“Knowing what it looked like five years ago, and seeing how it evolved to what it is now, we thought it'd be a good opportunity to be a part of its growth. Because, we saw what it did in a matter of five years,” Ricketts said in their store around lunchtime.

Houston County and the City of Warner Robins have spent nearly a million dollars helping expand this part of the County.

That includes streetlights, sidewalks, recreational areas and the new traffic light.

David Dean owns The Butcher Shop off Lake Joy and 96. He says in his three years of ownership, sales have tripled thanks to growth around the store.

“I've been here for 45 years and this used to be cow pastures out here. So I mean I've seen the growth ever since I've been here, but I mean yeah just in the last three years we can not only see the difference, but here at the store we've- our customer base has grown,” Dean said in his office.

The new traffic light at Lake Joy Road and Cohen Walker Drive also means a smoother ride for his customers.

“First of all, the intersection there is a lot easier, I've actually had customers tell me how much easier it is to get in and out of here,” Dean said.

That's exactly what County leaders wanted. They said the light is meant to help the flow of traffic and improve safety.

The County spent roughly $200,000 from SPLOST funds to install the light and pedestrian signals.

Construction on the sidewalks along Cohen Walker Drive is still underway.