The Rome-Floyd Transportation Policy Committee heard Wednesday how the new International Paper gas line could impact local trails and Ridge Ferry Park.
County Manager Jamie McCord said he met with Rome-Floyd Parks and Rec Director Todd Wofford and City Manager Sammy Rich earlier this week concerning the construction.
“They’re tentatively scheduled to start work after Thanksgiving,” McCord said. “There’s going to be some tree removal, some tree replacement, the (Mount Berry) Trail will be severed. It’s pretty in-depth work.”
Assistant Rome Public Works Director Justin Messer estimated about 20 trees in Ridge Ferry Park will be impacted during construction.
“It will be a good thing for the community in providing that gas service to the International Paper plant, but it’s going to be a disruption to a lot of things,” McCord said. “It’s also going to open up that area for additional industry to relocate in that area.”
Cave Spring City Council member Joyce Mink said that what she is most worried about is how people will travel around Rome and Floyd County during the construction.
“It’s going to be a disruption for the community on all of the right of ways in the areas it will go through during the next several months,” McCord said.
County Commissioner Allison Watters said representatives from Atlanta Gas Light met with county commissioners over a year ago about the project and it was very well thought out. However, she agreed with Mink that the public does need to be aware before construction starts.
The International Paper line will come in from the west along Alabama Highway and Shorter Avenue, turn north on Watson Street, then go east on Elm Street across Lavender Drive to John Davenport Drive.
From there, it will run north on North Division Street, east on Charlton Street and then south on Martha Berry Boulevard to the area of the post office — where the line will cross the river into Ridge Ferry Park.
From the park it will run up to Turner McCall Boulevard, head along Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and then on Kingston Highway. It will end at the gas company’s Rome Tap One.
The line will provide a 300 psi system with roughly 494,000 cubic feet of natural gas per hour to International Paper. The average residential home uses about 168 cubic feet a day.