Meet the Candidates for District 3, Eric Newburg
Posted on Oct 25th, 2021
Candidate: Eric Newburg
photo provided by Eric Newburg
Safety on our surface streets is a major concern for residents. How will you respond to the growing and unique safety issues specific to our area, including the rise of golf cart traffic on city streets and speeding on Riverside Drive?
Safety is and has been my first priority from day one of this campaign. Speeding represents a significant risk whether on Riverside Drive or Lake Forrest. Though policing does address some of the speeding concerns, continued education at schools and by our first responders concerning the risk of speeding can help to address the issue. Speed bumps also deter speeding but should be restricted to within neighborhoods. Golf carts represent a completely different issue for many communities including Sandy Springs. Walkability throughout the City has continued to improve due to a focus on expanding sidewalks and walking paths. As importantly, there are more events which bring our community together and provide a desire for the use of alternative transportation like golf carts. Unfortunately, our surface streets, like Riverside, are not conducive to golf cart use and would create significant risks. Communities like Peachtree City have created golf cart paths to provide separate “streets” for golf cart use. As the City continues to develop, there may be the opportunity to identify manners to more safely merge the use of golf carts into our City.
As the city grows, city infrastructure is at risk of becoming overburdened. What will the mayor’s office/city council do to improve street maintenance, better prepare our streets for winter storms and ensure post-storm clean-up is efficient?
Focusing on potholes in the streets may seem trivial. However, I believe that quickly fixing potholes, sink holes or protrusions from the street should be given higher priority. Aside from constantly damaging residents’ vehicles, potholes and the like can lead to congestion and accidents as people attempt to avoid long standing abnormalities in the road. There already exists a mechanism for the public to identify these problems to the City (seeclickfix.com). The next step is to create a process to quickly fix the problems.
Power outages are a very regular occurrence in District 3. What can city council do – likely in partnership with Georgia Power – to ensure that pruning and maintenance keep outages to a minimum?
One of the true identifying qualities of Sandy Springs is the tree canopy that covers much of the City. Our City Council has spent significant time addressing the importance of protecting that canopy while trying not to hinder development. Unfortunately, the existence of so many trees does lead to power outages as trees or tree limbs are a risk to the Georgia Power lines. While pruning branches is the best preventative maintenance, identifying which branches will actually create the outages is difficult. As well, the impact on the tree canopy cannot be ignored as the pruning can alter not only an individual tree but the whole canopy in an area. As a result, working closer with Georgia Power to 1) attempt to identify imminent risks which require pruning and 2) quickly address down lines should be the goal of the City. Consistent meetings with the City Staff and Georgia Power representatives should be scheduled to ensure open and direct lines of communication.