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Winder bypass could get funding from T-SPLOST

WINDER -- After years of questions and little funding, a bypass to Winder could finally be funded, if voters approve a transportation sales tax next year.

Of the $55 for the West Winder bypass, $24 million is scheduled to come from the regional tax, after months of negotiating with leaders from 12 counties.

"If we get this, phase one and phase two will be completed in 10 years," said Barrow Chairman Daniel Yearwood Jr. "It's going to mean a world of difference."

Yearwood said he was happy with the compromise list of projects for Barrow, since he received 13 of the 18 projects he requested.

A total of $66 million in sales tax funds could go to the constrained list, plus millions in state and federal dollars that could fully fund projects officials had been waiting on for years, including improvements of Kilcrease Road and a few interchanges along Ga. Highway 316.

While metro Atlanta's regional sales tax has 85 percent of funds devoted to regional projects and 15 percent given directly to counties and cities for their own projects, in Barrow's Northeast Georgia region, 75 percent are devoted to the constrained list and 25 percent will be given for local projects.

"I think it's a great thing to happen for the future," Yearwood said of the proposed sales tax.

This is the list of projects for Barrow County approved by the transportation roundtable:

-- $1.5 million to repave Atlanta Highway from Ga. 53 to the county line

-- $9 million to create an interchange at Ga. 316 and Ga. 11

-- $157,090 to add a turn lane on Dooley Town Road at Atlanta Highway

-- $1.1 million to widen, realign and resurface Kilcrease Road

-- $7.2 million to create a new interchange at Ga. 316 and Ga. 81

-- $2.8 million for Old Hog Mountain Road resurfacing, as well as widening and other improvements

-- $1.5 million for Ga. 11 at McElhannon Road intersection improvements

-- $900,000 for Ga. 211 at Cedar Creek Road and Hal Jackson Road intersection improvements

-- $600,000 for Ga. 211 at County Line-Auburn Road intersection improvements

-- $2.6 million for Ga. 53 at Mulberry Road intersection improvements

-- $15 million for Ga. 211 improvements (Highway 124 to Thompson Mill Road) in Braselton, including widening, multi-use trails and roundabouts

-- $15 million for the first phase of the West Winder bypass, including creating an interchange at Patrick Mill Road and Ga. 316

-- $9 million for the second phase of the West Winder bypass phase 2