Swain hired as Covington transportation director

COVINGTON — With 30 years experience working with the state Department of Transportation, Ken Swain now steps into a slower paced job as the city of Covington’s new transportation director.

A native of Conyers, Swain was graduated from Rockdale High School in 1978 and then pursued a civil engineering degree. Once out of college, he began his career overseeing DOT projects in the Atlanta area.

One of the most well-known transportation projects Swain had a hand in was the creation of Interstate 675. He also had a role in widening Ga. Highway 138 to the Georgia International Horse Park before the 1996 Summer Olympics.

Once he retired from the DOT, Swain was looking for a job in a smaller town. Having lived in Covington from 1989 to 1994, Swain was familiar with the community and ready for the change of pace it offered.

“It still has that small, hometown feel. I felt that it would be nice to move into a city where I already knew the capabilities of it,” Swain said. “Right now the department is going through some reorganization, but we’re going to stay focused on the projects that are at hand.”

One of the projects the department is focusing on is the reconstruction of Wheat Street as well as the Clark Street project that includes installing sidewalks, bike lanes and new curbs and gutters.

Swain said the city also plans to build a pedestrian bridge on Emory Street/Ga. Highway 81 to cross over I-20.

“There are several projects that are coming down the line within the next year in cooperation with the DOT. Most of those bigger projects will affect Newton County and would also impact the city,” Swain said. “As fast as Covington is growing, my goal is to try to get on board with what needs to be done in order to keep the roads in good condition like the people before me have.”