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President St. Project

President StreetWhat's the City doing on President Street?

In January 2015, the City embarked on a 30-month project to rebuild President Street and General McIntosh Boulevard to make the roads safer and more attractive, facilitate development along the corridor, and to improve drainage throughout downtown. Weekly updates on the progress of this project can be found at the President St. Project blog, www.savannahga.gov/president

The major aspects of the project include:

  • Raising the elevation of President Street and General McIntosh between 5 and 8 feet to alleviate street flooding. Currently, the roadway – one of the County’s major hurricane evacuation routes – floods during heavy tides and rainfall events.
  • Creation of new signalized intersections onto properties to the north and south of President Street, which is necessary before development can begin on these properties.
  • Reconfiguration of the intersection of General McIntosh and President Street.
  • Construction of a bridge over an expanded Bilbo Canal, which will improve drainage through much of the greater downtown area.
  • New landscaping and pedestrian-friendly features will enhance the appearance of this major gateway into Savannah, including stamped brick crosswalks at the new intersections and sidewalks along both sides of President Street.

The first phase of this project included reconstruction of a sewer force main at East Broad Street and Oglethorpe Avenue. Then the project moved off East Broad Street and major work to East President Street and General McIntosh Boulevard began.

More than 100,000 cubic yards of fill dirt is being trucked in and dumped and graded along the south side of President Street, where it will sit idle for up to 180 days during a process called surcharging. This surcharging is required to allow settling and water extraction prior to the laying of utilities.

The project has impacted traffic in three ways:

  • Travel lanes have been reduced to two lanes in each direction on President during construction. The temporary travel lanes are narrower in width than the original lanes.
  • Due to the need to keep two travel lanes open at all times, the turn lane onto southbound Truman Parkway is not accessible and will remain closed during much of the construction. This means there is no Truman access from eastbound President Street. Northbound Truman Parkway traffic will still be able to exit onto President Street, and the Truman can still be accessed from westbound President. But downtown traffic wanting to get on the Truman is being detoured south on Wheaton Street to the Anderson Street on-ramp.
  • General McIntosh Boulevard is closed to through traffic. Traffic instead continues on President Street to East Broad Street. Throughout the project, access to the Savannah Riverfront Marriot will remain open from Bay Street.