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Wednesday, September 11, 2013 - 2:00am

Reichert Doubles Down On I-75/I-16

Updated: 1 year ago.
Macon Mayor Robert Reichert is reterating his support for the controversial expansion of Macon's I-75/I-16 interchange as he seeks the new office of Macon-Bibb County mayor. (Photo: Adam Ragusea/GPB News)

Macon Mayor Robert Reichert is touting his role in passing the consolidation referendum as he seeks the new office of city-county mayor.

In an interview with GPB, Reichert called consolidation with Bibb County his biggest accomplishment.

"We're sitting here fussing and fighting amongst ourselves while somebody else is eating out lunch," Reichert said. "So the greatest legacy I think I leave is that we have pulled the city together, and now pulled the city and county together."

But Reichert's most enduring legacy might turn out to be on the highway. He has been mayor at a time when support for the massive expansion of Macon's I-75/I-16 interchange has waned.

In April, Reichert cast the tie-breaking vote on a Macon Area Transportation Study committee to keep the project alive.

In the interview, Reichert said he's sensitive to concerns that the new interchange might be too big, but he's convinced of its necessity.

"We're trying to accommodate the volume of traffic that's projected coming from the deepened port in Savannah, trying to get to and through Atlanta, and still allow us to get to the Little League game through that interchange in a car," he said.

Reichert said he's also convinced that G-DOT planners have done everything they can to make their 14-lane design as compact as possible.

GPB spoke with Macon-Bibb mayoral candidates C. Jack Ellis on Monday, Charlie Bishop on Tuesday, and will speak with all other candidates on the ballot in the coming days.

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