Riverwalk delayed by surveying requirements

Published 6:23 pm Tuesday, August 28, 2012

An Atlanta-area company will soon travel to Bainbridge to dig up the banks of the Flint River, as part of an archaeological survey being done in advance of the city’s planned riverwalk project.

City officials are still awaiting final approval of an environmental assessment related to the riverwalk, which would pave a path between Cheney Griffin Park, Hatcher Road and the Earle May Boat Basin. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which has to approve the environmental assessment before work can begin, is also requiring that the city pay for an archeological survey of the river banks that would be affected, City Manager Chris Hobby said.

At their regular meeting last Tuesday, the Bainbridge City Council approved a bid of $8,243.95 from New South Associates, of Stone Mountain, Ga., to perform the archaelogical survey.

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Asked by Mayor Edward Reynolds what the survey would entail, Hobby said the company will be using shovels to dig up earth from the river banks, which will then be taken back to the company’s lab in Stone Mountain.

“We asked [the Corps of Engineers] what we should be looking for in the survey, and they responded that they couldn’t tell us that,” Hobby said. “They may find a few random arrowheads but honestly, as many times as that area has been flooded, I would expect anything significant that might have been there has been washed away.”