Kennesaw – So What’s Next? by Jonathan Worley
Yes, Kennesaw has got a lot going on, with all the special events, the farmer’s market and everything else it certainly isn’t letting the grass grow under its feet. When you add that to historic preservation efforts and the conservation and everything else being done to keep its legacy alive you know the work just never ends. It’s not just keeping Kennesaw going in the present or making sure its past never dies that matters though. It’s also important to ensure Kennesaw’s future, to make sure it is still going strong in the coming years. Make no mistake that is no easy task.
First and foremost among these developments is the pedestrian underpass that is currently under construction. It will be located on Main St. and will be a 115 ft. long tunnel going under the railroad track currently used by CSX. Pam Davis, media/marketing specialist for the City of Kennesaw, says this will make commercial development in the area more possible by allowing pedestrians a safe means of getting to Main St. from the area where the museum and train depot are located. Mayor Mark Mathews said it will “make the area more accessible, reduce congestion, and enhance traffic flow, an essential step in attracting development.” Artwork in the form of relief panels by Wilbur G. Kurtz will be incorporated into the tunnel’s design depicting the Great Locomotive Chase. Construction began in early July and will take six months to complete with the design being done by the URS Corporation in conjunction with Mactec Engineering and contracting done by JJE Constructors Inc.
In order to adapt to the growing population, the town itself is also forced to grow. To that end work has begun to widen the part of Jiles Rd. in between the intersections of Cherokee St. and Baker Rd. The work is currently in its first phase which will be bringing the creation of a turn lane and concrete median along with new traffic lights at the Royal St. intersection and the on-ramp to I-75. This will be completed in January and will be followed by the second phase which will bring about a bridge widening.
It seems that the town of Kennesaw is preparing for the future quite nicely. Who knows what other development it will require, but you know that the mayor, city council and citizens will meet whatever need they must in order to make their town as great as ever.