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No left turn lanes at intersection
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Improvements to Etowah River and Thompson roads at Hwy. 53 proved slightly different than plans initially outlined by transportation officials.

For the time being, there will not be left turn lanes on the side roads, according to Teri Pope, spokeswoman for the Georgia Department of Transportation.

"When the project began, we were originally looking at installing a signal," she said.

Upon review, the crossing did not meet the minimum requirements for a traffic signal and plans were revised.

Pope called the change in construction plans a safety issue.

"Without a signal there, it would be too confusing to have the left turn lanes from on the side roads," she said. "There is room at the crossing when the turn lanes are needed in the future."

Construction on the busy intersection began in September 2012 and was initially scheduled to be complete by June 30.

At $2.7 million, the work included adding right- and left-turn lanes on Hwy. 53 and changing the grade on all sides to improve driver visibility.