Madison County Opinion...

December 26, 2001


Column
By Frank Gillespie
The Madison County Journal
December 26, 2001, 2001

Frankly Speaking

A traffic solution
When my father finally saved enough money to start his own house, he decided to leave Athens and return to our native Madison County. He found a modest tract of land on a quiet, rural road just across the county line that was reasonably priced. It was just what he wanted. As soon as he had paid for the land, he put in a well, cleared a spot in the wheat field that covered the site and laid out a foundation.
The few residents watched our progress with considerable interest. The construction of a new house in that area was sufficiently unusual to attract the attention of our future neighbors.
The road Dad chose as our future home, then known as the Dogsboro Road, is approximately one and one-half miles in length. When we started work on the house, there were fewer than a dozen homes on the road. We could easily sit on the front porch and see no more than one or two cars per hour.
We were far enough along to move in during the fall of 1955. It was just two weeks after the opening of the new consolidated Madison County High School in Danielsville.
Unfortunately, our quiet neighborhood didn’t last long. Several hundred other families made the same discovery. Construction of new houses, side streets, power poles, streetlights quickly made our road the fastest growing area of Madison County. They even changed the name of the street to honor Glenn and Carrie Brown, long-time residents of the area.
Recently, I counted 35 cars passing in front of my home in one minute!
And with plans for even more development in the area, that count will continue to grow.
One thing that has not changed is the width of the street. Glenn Carrie is still the same narrow, winding street it was in 1955. It would be very expensive to add a new lane to the street. The shoulders on both sides are filled with pipes and cables supplying the hundreds of homes with gas, water and telephone service. Even if the county spent the money necessary to add a turn lane to Glenn Carrie, that would only increase the traffic.
Recently, the new county planner suggested that Madison County needs to change its zoning rules to encourage more grid streets. That is very needed in the Glenn Carrie area. A new street running parallel to Glenn Carrie from Wooddale to Hwy. 29 would connect the back sides of Gillispie Drive, Grady Drive, Arthur Road, Williamson Drive and Reece Lane, giving the entire area a second outlet. It would ease traffic pressures on Glenn Carrie and open additional areas to development Hull-Dogsboro has been earmarked as the growth are of Madison County.
But that growth needs to be supported with infrastructure. New streets are essential for the safety and convenience of the area’s old and new residents. Hopefully, our county planners will see the value of a new east-west street north of Glenn Carrie. It would certainly make my life easier.
Frank Gillispie is founder of The Madison County Journal. His web page can be accessed at www.mcga.net. His e-mail address is frankg@mcga.net.

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Column
B y Ben Munro
The Madison County Journal
December26, 2001

In Other Words

Even Santa remembers sports
Several in sports have been naughty and nice, but everybody deserved to get at least something under their tree yesterday.
With that in mind, here’s a list of holiday gifts and wishes that should have stuffed the stockings of those connected to local and national sports.
•A virus detector to the BCS for their computer. A bad microchip somewhere must be to blame for the computer equation that gave us Nebraska in a national title game after not even being the best team in their division.
•A job for George O’Leary. If anyone needed some holiday cheer, it’s this guy. The former Tech coach lost his dream job after his shady résumé got turned down by Notre Dame like a 17-year-old trying to buy a case of beer with a bogus ID. I hear Jefferson High School is looking for a football coach.
•A coach of the year award for Doug Kesler. Madison County’s softball coach lost eight seniors from last season’s team, which was the program’s most successful ever—until this year that is. Kesler’s “rebuilding year” turned out to be a gem, winning a school-record 30 games along with a school-best second-place finish at state.
•An abacus for Peach and Cotton Bowl officials for them to count with. Both looked past 8-3 Georgia to take 7-4 Auburn and Arkansas teams. Perhaps they couldn’t grasp first-grade math: eight is greater than seven.
• A muzzle for Steve Spurrier. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. The Florida Gators are one of the nation’s dirtiest teams, but the “evil genius” yapped last month that Florida State took cheap shots at his “innocent” players. Someone take Steve’s holiday stocking and gag him with it.
• A thank you card to the Arizona Diamondbacks. All we’ve heard about over the past few years was the invincibility of the New York Yankees—that is, until a still-fledgling baseball franchise overtook baseball’s penthouse this fall.
• Send a lump of coal to Hollywood. On Christmas day, the movie “Ali” premieres, celebrating the life of the most obnoxious figure in sports history. Yeah, I feel bad for his current plight, but that doesn’t over shadow that the loud-mouthed boxer rhymed and danced his way to fame. And a movie just fuels his over-hyped mystique.
• Bulldog football season tickets for me next year. I haven’t missed a home game since 1994 and hopefully that streak won’t end in 2002.
• A five-year contract for Mark Richt. This summer, the talk shows and sportswriters basically left the scraps to the ’Dogs when it came to preseason praise. But the rookie coach— regardless of how the Music City Bowl ends up — has given the Bulldog contingent a reason for happy holidays. (And he can even fill out his own résumé correctly.)
Ben Munro is a reporter for Mainstreet News.


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