Lets Get The Greenway Flooding Corrected

Lets Get The Greenway Flooding Corrected

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Nicole Cannata started this petition to City of Lilburn and

I am asking you all to join in so we can get something very dangerous in our park fixed. This has affected not only my family personally, but countless others we have spoken to about these issues in Lilburn. Dozens of people have stepped up to tell us their stories; cuts, bruises, broken ribs, and more. How this has continued without any forward thinking changes is beyond my understanding. We love Gwinnett Parks and brag about them often, so the condition of this trail seems to misalign with the standards we have seen with parks throughout our county and city. 

Over the years my family and I have run the Lilburn Greenway path many times. We know exactly where it will flood after a rain, and which areas are the worst. For many years we simply ignored these patches of mud and accepted them as quirks on our trail system. It wasn't until this weekend that we truly recognized the extraordinary danger these spots pose. Specifically one over all the others is what I hope to grab your attention regarding. The section I am referring to is the underpass for Rockbridge. The amount of mud that collects and has nowhere to go is insufferable. To add, when you are leaving Lions Club heading to Lilburn City Park you come down a steep hill which gives you speed, then you find yourself coming into a blind curve that leads straight into that treacherous area. Over the years we have seen “band-aids” for this issue, instead of addressing it head on. A rubber mat, rocks being placed, ravines being dug up, and a slippery when wet sign added. None of these are anywhere near efficient for this flooded issue. Beyond the immediate danger it imposes, it is not accessible for anyone with a disability or our elderly neighbors. 


Our six year old son with disabilities crumbled into a pile of mud and blood this weekend in that spot. This is absolutely unacceptable. This area is known by both the city and county, and nothing has been done. No plans to change this issue that we have been made aware of or communicated. His accident could have been avoided. It was by no fault of his own that he sustained the injuries he did. To make it worse for this little boy, that bike ride was one of so much triumph and success. As a six year old with a number of special needs we worked so hard, over many years of grueling physical therapies, to get him where he is today. He was riding his bicycle and for him and our family that is huge. A fete we thought would not come to our little boy, with both hypoplastic left heart syndrome and cerebral palsy. To say he overcame a mountain to do a simple rite of passage such as riding a bicycle is an understatement. A proud, heavily celebrated moment was ripped away from our family, by a spot that should not be there. To see him emerge from the mud, his arm dripping in blood, and the look of absolute defeat could have and should have been avoided. 

The scripted response that our community has received from officials like: “this is built on a floodplain” or, “boardwalks are expensive”, and “there's nothing more that can be done other than clearing out the mud after a storm” is unsatisfactory and quite unsettling. These seem like responses that seek to brush this issue under the rug because it means time and money. Well, I can tell you that dozens, if not hundreds of people are beginning to step up and let their voices be heard. It is enough, and we are coming together to let our elected officials and leadership know we demand change. Beyond what it means personally for our family, this could be so much worse. While documenting the area he crashed in, we watched runners come up to the flood, fail to get around it, only to climb up the wall and cross over Rockbridge. This should be deemed intolerable and alarming by the Parks Department and any city or county official once brought to their attention. This is a recipe for disaster, and I hope it does not take a life severely injured or lost for something to be done. 

Its time the city and county alike here our wishes and concerns. This is a safety issue that needs to be addressed. We love our trail and want to see it succeed. 

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