Police chief: South Main traffic jam possible

Published 4:50am Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Traffic is expected to be heavy Wednesday on South Main Street near the Wetumpka Civic Center. From 12 to 9 p.m. Poarch Creek Indian Gaming will host a job fair aimed at hiring about 500 full- and part-time employees for the soon-to-open $246 million hotel and casino.

Local officials said they want to be prepared for the thousands of applicants likely to attend the fair.

“It’s impossible to anticipate how many people will come, but we want to be ready,” said Wetumpka Mayor Jerry Willis.

Wetumpka Police Chief Celia Dixon encouraged those motorists who typically take South Main off of U.S. Highway 231 as a shortcut to west Wetumpka, Slapout or Elmore to instead use the Coosa River Parkway that one day.

“We don’t want to discourage anyone from going to a downtown business,” said Dixon. “But if you’re just going through town and not to a specific business, we recommend you use the bypass.

“If you are going to a downtown business that day it will probably be quicker to take a few extra minutes and come into town using another street besides South Main.”

Although parking “will probably be limited” according to Dixon, the crunch should be alleviated to some extent by additional parking to be provided on casino property a short distance from the civic center.

“The casino’s fenced employee parking lot at the corner of Love Lane and South Main will be available for applicants to park,” Dixon said. “They will run a shuttle from there to the civic center. We will be monitoring the traffic and the parking lots to help ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible.”

PCI representatives said a wide range of positions are available, from housekeeping to management. Successful applicants will be offered jobs at the fair, they said.

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