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Bike, Pedestrian Bridge Planned to go Over Chattahoochee

A public meeting on the project was held, this week.

If you’ve ever used the sidewalk on the Roswell Road bridge over the Chattahoochee River, you know it can be scary; especially if you are jogging or on a bicycle.

A joint project between Roswell and Sandy Springs promises pedestrian and bicycle enhancements that would improve safety and could ultimately connect parks in both cities.

“Both Roswell and Sandy Springs want an eye-catching gateway structure,” said Mark W. Holmberg, consultant on the $2.8 million project.

Public input meetings on the project were held on Tuesday at Sandy Springs City Hall and last week in Roswell. Few citizens attended the Sandy Springs meeting.

The proposed project could include construction of a pedestrian and bicycle bridge, 500 feet in length over the Chattahoochee River, and a multi-use trail connecting the bridge to the intersection that links Roswell Road, Azalea Drive and Riverside Road - on the north side of the river; and the existing sidewalk on the east side of Roswell Road – the south side of the river.

Bicycling enthusiast and Sandy Springs City Council member Dianne Fries has been involved in project plans since its infancy stages.  “I’m very excited,” she said. “It been almost two years.”

That’s when Roswell Mayor Jere Wood brought the idea to her, Fries said. “…We work on bike races together. It just made sense.”

Fries envisions bike trails that link parks in both cities, starting with a path that connects Riverside and Azalea Parks to Roberts Drive and Island Ford at the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. 

There are several alternatives for the new enhancements. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, said Robert Dell-Ross with the Roswell Department of Transportation.

“I don’t have a preference,” he said. “I just want to get something built. We're hoping [construction starts] the absolute soonest by the summer of 2013.”

Construction is expected take about a year or less.

Mike Buteau October 13, 2011 at 06:15 PM
As a cyclist/runner who crosses over Roswell Rd from Riverside Rd and occasionally rides across the bridge, I am all in favor of this project. I would ride/run across the bridge more often if it wasn't so dangerous. This project would also likely ease morning/evening rush-hour car congestion along Riverside. I certainly hope this goes through. I was out of town during the initial meeting in Roswell, but hope to attend future meetings.
janet h russell October 13, 2011 at 07:40 PM
Anyone who wants to get to the other side . Right now you have to have a death wish if you want to cross the river by any means except a car. Time to connect the 2 sides of the river so people can walk, run, bike, skate to other side. Too bad Ga. Dot didn't keep the original COVERED bridge when they built the current one. It would have been an historical landmark and a real "bridge from the past to the present and to the future". By the way, the Sandy Springs meeting had more than the Roswell meeting. I attended both. I have been a proponent of this bridge for more than 25 years. Finally someone listened.
Joe Seconder October 13, 2011 at 07:46 PM
I will fully support this when I see the programmed and budgeted plan from Sandy Springs on Bicycle Facilities linking from the river going south. Roberts Drive is the only option I see, and was designated for a bicycle facility on their 2008 Transportation Plan. Extend it all the way down Roberts Drive to the newly-built bike lanes in Dunwoody. Here's some of the history I've had with Sandy Springs in asking them about doing bicycle projects: http://www.bicyclingjoe.com/2011/03/fixed-drain-grates-is-sandy-springs.html

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