Parkway, Walt Banks to get turn lanes...

Thu, 06/08/2006 - 2:59pm
By: John Munford

... But no stoplight; Target traffic feared

The roundabout is out for the intersection of Peachtree Parkway and Walt Banks Road.

But change is still afoot: left-turn lanes will be added to the parkway in both directions and a left-turn lane will be added for westbound traffic on Walt Banks heading away from McIntosh High School.

The work was approved last week by the Peachtree City Council in hopes of avoiding any problems from increased traffic from to the Target store that is slated to open later this summer.

Jeff Dyer of Qk4, the city's traffic consulting firm, suggested that if the turn lanes were added, it would be better to add a traffic light to the intersection due to the multiple directions and movements the extra lanes would create. But several council members said firmly they firmly didn't want a stop light at the intersection.

City Manager Bernie McMullen noted that the city's new budget includes funds for a crossing guard to monitor the intersection, and Councilman Stuart Kourajian said he absolutely didn't want to leave the crossing at-grade.

McMullen said he watched school-time traffic at the crossing, noting that the four-way stop is safer for carts and others to cross because the crossing is near the stop signs, which force vehicles in all directions to stop.

The additional traffic from Target might change that situation somewhat as more cars go through the intersection, said Councilwoman Cyndi Plunkett.

"Then people get less patient," Plunkett noted.

The tunnel proposal was expensive at $800,000 and part of that was due to the retaining walls that would be necessary to put it underground, Dyer said.

Others have questioned whether the roundabout, designed to keep traffic moving, would endanger those using the cart path crossing. Dyer said the cart path crossing for the Parkway was relocated further south for safety reasons in the proposed roundabout design.

Dyer recommended the roundabout, and council could have added a diagonal tunnel underneath the intersection to allow golf carts and other path traffic to get from the western side of the parkway to Walt Banks.

Dyer said the firm's traffic projections, which indicated a 19 percent increase in traffic attributable to the Target store in the Kedron shopping center, also included the further development of the Lexington Circle mixed-use area and an annual 2 percent increase in traffic for general growth in vehicle counts.

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fancypants's picture
Submitted by fancypants on Fri, 06/09/2006 - 9:12am.

First the city approves all the big boxes to move in on the West side, BEFORE Hwy 54 gets finished! Uh, oh, surprise, surprise! All of a sudden there is tons of traffic and getting out of Home Depot and Walmart is a nightmare. But nobody at the city saw that coming?

Now they approved Target and guess what? Similar problems are already on the horizon.

Why can the city not get their act together and put traffic management solutions in place BEFORE they allow big business to open shop all over town?

I hear Petco and Bath & Beyond stores are also coming soon. Can you say PTC Pavilion without proper planning?

Submitted by dc on Thu, 06/08/2006 - 10:00pm.

A roundabout is a complex traffic management solution that would have placed our most inexperienced drivers and their passengers at greater risk. Congratulations Council on a wise decision.

mudcat's picture
Submitted by mudcat on Thu, 06/08/2006 - 6:57pm.

Does not solve the problem at all. Tell me and others how this helps? Two turning lanes? Where do you people get your traffic training?

PTC Guy's picture
Submitted by PTC Guy on Thu, 06/08/2006 - 10:19pm.

Adding the traffic cop at peak times will suffice for now. And turn lanes will help as well.

A traffic light can alway be added later.

But a roundabout would have been a disaster. Accident acres.

Keeping it real and to the core of the issue, not the peripherals.

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