Improvements could come soon to Macon's Riverside Drive

Bibb looks at changing parts of Riverside Drive

Big changes could be coming to parts of Macon’s Riverside Drive, and Planning and Zoning wants to hear what the public wants.

They are holding a public meeting Wednesday to hear how the community wants to make the area from Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard to Madison Street safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers.

Lorrin Anderson says he rides his bike down Riverside Drive every single day.

“I have to go around the bridge in order to get over here to get to the Kroger because there's no grocery store nearby,” says Anderson.

But Anderson says when he rides, he comes across more than just other bike riders.

“The debris that's coming off of the garbage trucks that’s leaving nails and glass and big screws in the middle of the streets, and we can’t avoid them. Otherwise, we get hit by cars,” says Anderson.

He says the sidewalks are covered in cracks. Between the road and sidewalk, Anderson says he is constantly almost getting hit by cars and popping tires.

“If they make room for us bikers, we'll be safer riding up and down these streets,” says Anderson.

That is what Brad Belo says Macon-Bibb Planning and Zoning is trying to do.

“This is an important gateway to downtown Macon from Interstate 16,” says Belo.

Belo says they want to redo Riverside Drive to make it safer and make the area more inviting.

“A lot of the conditions here don’t reflect what Macon really is, so we need to start a conversation of how do we change that. How do we show our arrivals coming off of 16? How do we really welcome them to Macon?” says Belo.

Belo says they think that could help revitalize an area that he says looks abandoned.

“I’d like them to make it a safer place and clean the curbs up in Macon,” says Anderson.

Anderson says it could make his daily commute a lot safer.

Belo says they received an $85,000 Downtown Challenge grant to pay for a survey to see what changes they can make with the space they have available.

The meeting is Wednesday from 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. at New City Church off of Riverside Drive. That address is 1015 Riverside Drive.

© 2017 WMAZ-TV


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