Potholes, big dips and upset Southside neighbors

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.-- Bumpy, jolting and jarring. Take a short ride down Cordial Drive on the city's Southside and those words will come to mind.

"It's an obstacle course." said Douglas Smith who lives on the road.

About a half-dozen neighbors voiced their concerns to First Coast News Wednesday morning.

"It's really frustrating. It should've been fixed a long time ago," Lee Ford, who also lives on the road, said. "I just pray to God that it gets fixed."

One neighbor who lived on the road for nearly 60 years said the road used to be paved.

"Some of them, you can lay down inside the pot hole," Smith said.

The road is so bad, claim residents, that cars have been damaged. Smith says when it rains 'lakes of water' form in the roadway.

"Every car on the street has some kind of damage, whether it's suspension damage or your tires wear out faster," Smith said.

Another neighbor claims the road is so bad an ambulance would not venture down the roadway, forcing a neighbor in a wheelchair to be taken to the main road for assistance.

Some of the potholes are several inches deep and more than one foot across. Another dip in the roadway is so large, that a small car can fit inside it.

Smith showed FCN emails where he has contacted his city representative as well as other city officials.

Neighbors say they just want the potholes repaired or the road paved. Smith said he has contacted the city, along with his city council member. But he felt he and his neighbors weren't getting anywhere.

"I'm paying 1,500-$1,600 a year in taxes and they're not willing to do anything about this road that they own?" Smith asked.

"I want them to pave it. It would be real nice if you paved it," Linda Mercer, who also lives on the street said.

A spokesperson for the City of Jacksonville told First Coast News the city has been in contact with Smith and other residents who live here. It is what's called an un-maintained road. That means the road was originally built decades ago but not to city standards.

The city is willing to work with residents to get the ball rolling on paving the road via a special dirt road paving trust fund if it meets criteria such as the road was built before 1989 an serves at least 2 residents. Owners must be willing to pay 2/3 of the construction costs and he city will pick up the rest of the tab.

The city spokesperson said it sounds like this road meets the criteria to have the road paved. The city will reach out to Mr. Smith to get this started. All they have to do is call 630-CITY to get started.


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