In many communities across the country Americans experience transportation 'interruptions' caused by neglected roads and highways and those problems may attract plenty of attention --even consensus on the severity of the problem-- and still we are forced to wait... And then when the DOT comes in, sometimes the fix is worse than the original problem. Have you encountered that?

Georgia's DOT is taking steps now to improve two-way communication to keep everybody informed on what's going on and how long it will take. Even better than that, they're asking for input from local folks who might have good ideas on what could work best to fix problems while detouring vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

Being responsible for more than 18,000 miles of roads and highways in a state of nearly 10 million people, GDOT says it realizes its projects are almost always in someone’s way. "And while we have to do the work necessary to grow and maintain the state’s transportation system, we certainly also ought to make it easier for people to know 'what in the world we're doing to that road' and know exactly what we’re doing that’s put us in their way.

A new feature of the Department’s website Georgia Dept. of Transportation does just that, and much more.

Titled simply Projects, this new feature will offer the public understandable descriptions and the current status of Georgia DOT projects throughout the state. Easy-to-use links allow viewers to learn about select major projects that have statewide or regional effects, projects in their home and neighboring communities, or work that may be going on along routes they intend to travel on an upcoming trip.

And the site’s new “Quick Fix” section gives the public an opportunity to inform the Department of roadway or traffic problems they’ve noticed and offer suggestions on how they believe the issues might be remedied.

To open Projects, visitors to the Georgia DOT website simply click on the yellow hardhat located mid-page on the left. From there, links are available in four boxes titled: Featured Projects, Project Search, State Project Map and Suggest a Quick Fix. Featured Projects provides current information about various major projects around the state and also offers links to individual websites of high-profile projects.

'Project Search' utilizes the Department’s TransPi feature and allows the user to search for specific projects with as little starting information as the county it is in and the road it is on. State Project Map is a Geographic Information System (GIS) tool that allows the viewer to see information on ongoing projects or other data on bridges, crashes or permits throughout the state.

Finally, 'Suggest a Quick Fix' offers the public the opportunity to point out to Georgia DOT engineers existing operational roadway problems like pedestrian/bike conflicts; turn lanes needed at intersections; signal timing or sight distance issues; as well as offer their own suggestions for immediate fixes.

What do you think? Does your state DOT make it easy to get the answers you need? Or should they follow Georgia's lead?