Dude, where’s my bus?

August 31, 2010

For transit customers, it’s a familiar question: “When will the next bus arrive?” The answer to that question is even more important for time-sensitive commuter trips or during periods of inclement weather. Nobody wants to be late for work or wait for long periods of time in the rain. In the Atlanta region, most transit providers only release scheduled, rather than real-time bus arrival data. What’s needed is open, real-time transit data, based on the current location of the transit vehicle.

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Autumn 2010 Bike/Ped Grant Opportunties

August 26, 2010

The following grants for bike/ped improvements are open to applications this fall:

  • The federal Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program improves pedestrian safety for elementary and middle school students through education and infrastructure funding.  The Call for Applications period for 2010 SRTS Infrastructure Projects will be from August 23 to November 23.  Several workshops have been scheduled throughout the state to assist applicants.  Please see GDOT’s SRTS website for more information.

Fifty Forward Neighborhood Forums Summary Report Now Available

August 25, 2010

A Fifty Forward Initiative update from the Civic League for Regional Atlanta:

Between 2008 and 2010, The Civic League for Regional Atlanta held a series of facilitated discussions with  746 people across the 10-county region called Neighborhood Forums. Our goal was to ensure that citizens’ voices were represented in the Atlanta Regional Commission’s “Fifty Forward” project, an ambitious visioning initiative centered around critical topics expected to impact metro Atlanta for decades to come. In all, 13 forums were held, with each focused on one of five topics: diversity, sustainability, land use and housing, transportation, and public health and healthcare.

We listened to and recorded everything Neighborhood Forum participants told us, and then turned our data over to researchers at Georgia State University’s Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, who organized and summarized it. Last month, we proudly shared what Forum participants told us about their hopes, needs and priorities for their region with ARC staff and about 100 business, civic and public sector leaders who met at a final Fifty Forward event to draft a vision for metro Atlanta, circa 2060.

The Fifty Forward Neighborhood Forums represent a big step toward more inclusive regional policy making. We are grateful to those who participated for their thoughtful comments and original ideas and to our colleagues at ARC for their enthusiastic support. We encourage you to take a look at the report — entitled “Prominent Themes in the Neighborhood Forums of The Civic League for Regional Atlanta”  — available here.

SR 821: What It Is and What It Means For You (Updated)

August 19, 2010

(Editor’s note: SR 821 is now known as Referendum #3 on the 2010 General Election Ballot)

The Georgia Department of Transportation website offers a thorough review of Senate Resolution 821, which addresses how GDOT budgets for multiyear transportation projects.  The bill places a question on the November general election ballot that asks voters to amend the Georgia Constitution. The question will read as follows:

“Shall the constitution of Georgia be amended so as to allow the Georgia Department of Transportation to enter into multiyear construction agreements without requiring appropriations in the current fiscal year for the total amount of payments that would be due under the entire agreement so as to reduce long-term construction costs paid by the state?”

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Pennies Add Up in Henry: East Lake Parkway SPLOST Project Opens

August 17, 2010

The Henry County SPLOST Department is working diligently to get as many transportation projects completed as possible while bid prices are lower, stretching the value of the penny sales tax to accomplish even more. The department currently has 13 SPLOST transportation projects totaling more than $61 million under construction, and has already completed eight others totaling $23,338,071.32.

East Lake Parkway Phase II Groundbreaking Ceremony

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In Rockdale, South River Trail to Expand

August 12, 2010

Construction on the next phase of the South River Trail is expected to begin next fall and will add to the trail beyond the initial phase that was completed in 2008.

Andrew Hammer, projects manager with the Rockdale County Department of General Services and Engineering, said during an update to the Rockdale Board of Commissioners that construction is expected to begin in September on the next phase of the trail.

The latest section of the proposed 13-mile trail will run about 2.5 miles from Daniels Bridge Road, through the DeCastro family property donated to the county, and into the South Rockdale Community Park on Fairview Road.

The trail now ends at Alexander Lake on Flat Bridge Road, near the old Southerness Golf Course (pictured above). This portion of the trail was completed in 2008. The trail extends into DeKalb County to the Arabia Mountain Nature Center and the Mall at Stonecrest.

Eventually, the path will run along the river to connect the Arabia Mountain Nature Center with the Monastery of the Holy Spirit. The path itself will be a 12-foot-wide concrete trail for use by walkers and bicyclists.

Click here for more information (source: Rockdale Citizen)

Region’s First Bus Rapid Transit Line Scheduled to Open this Fall

August 10, 2010

As stated above, the region’s long-awaited first arterial bus rapid transit (BRT) service is set to open by the end of the year. The concept (shown below) dates back to 2002 and will include much needed pedestrian and signalization upgrades along the Memorial Drive corridor in Dekalb County.

Memorial Drive BRT Corridor and Station Locations

Service will initially be funded from the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) program. For more information on this project, please visit the MARTA website.