The man overseeing cuts to a pair of major Atlanta public works programs says that so far, he’s hearing that the public wants to prioritize bike, pedestrian and street upgrades.
“The community feedback received suggested a strong preference for the complete streets scenario,” said Joshua Williams, deputy chief operating officer of the city of Atlanta, speaking to a City Council committee on Wednesday.
For the last few months, Williams has been looking into what to do with two bond programs that promised Atlantans $940 million in road, sidewalk, bridge and other public works. Atlantans voted for the programs, Renew Atlanta and TSPLOST, in 2015 and 2016. But the programs are only going to be able to deliver $530 million in projects. That’s a $410 million shortfall and cuts that have to be made.
The city’s staff is looking at how to prioritize projects. They’re weighing things like safety, equity and mobility.
Renew/TSPLOST has also held four public meetings this year. Williams said the meetings had more than 300 attendees overall. The city has also received more than 1,500 public surveys, Williams said. So that’s where he’s getting much of the feedback that says complete streets are a priority.
Williams’ team’s preliminary recommendation does emphasize complete streets, more than 26 miles of them. But they also would resurface more than 135 miles of road and improve the traffic lights at more than 330 intersections.