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McGinnis Ferry Road Project in Suwanee Has Many Meanings

Gwinnett, city and state officials turn out Tuesday for the formal dedication of the bypass and bridge over I-85.

Josh Clark looked down the new McGinnis Ferry Road bridge over I-85 on Tuesday in Suwanee and remembered a different scene.

"I used to live down there ... an old farmhouse on the right," said Clark, now a Buford resident who also is a member of the Georgia Legislature representing part of Suwanee.

Clark and several other city, county and state officials turned out for the formal dedication of the McGinnis Ferry Road project, which includes a four-lane bridge over I-85. The ceremony at Celebration Drive, formerly Gwinco Boulevard, included a ribbon-cutting with all five Gwinnett County Commissioners.

The bridge opened to traffic in August. The 1.6-mile road extension connects Satellite Boulevard to Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road and provides a virtual freeway bypass.

For Dan Foster, the new roadway means something else. The Suwanee City Council member, who also was on hand, is an avid Gwinnett Braves fan. "I can take McGinnis Ferry Road to the stadium," he said Tuesday.

"It's not just mobility but also safety is helped by this project," Chairwoman Charlotte Nash said in her speech.

Outgoing Gwinnett Transportation Director Brian Allen said there are five more projects in the county that are in various stages of completion.

"Delivery is our No. 1 goal," Allen said.

The $20.4 million project was funded by federal stimulus money; Gwinnett SPLOST dollars were used in the design phase.

The Georgia Department of Transportation directed construction, much of which was done by E.R. Snell Co.

Said Rudy Bowen, chairman of the Georgia DOT board, "Gwinnett County always delivers."

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