Context Sensitive Design for a Safe, Connected Community
Located some 30 miles north of Atlanta, the City of Milton is a young city proud of its rural and equestrian history and easy living. After a Placemaking Plan identified areas for connectivity improvement in the evolving downtown area, the city set out to address the challenges by hiring Pond to provide a context sensitive design solution that would alleviate the growing traffic demands and address the minimal pedestrian mobility options.
As one of the top-ranking cities in the Southeast for quality of life, the City of Milton sought a solution that reinforced the already strong sense of community found throughout the city, enabled better connected neighborhoods, and reduced congestion.
The result was the Northeast Crabapple Connector. Now a critical stitch in the fabric of the community, this project encompassed the design and construction of a roundabout, sidewalks and on-street parking providing much needed congestion relief, improving multimodal transportation, and supporting continued development of the vibrant downtown.
With a nod to the community’s history, the project integrated the placement of a horse statue, which proudly stands in the center of the roundabout as a testament to the city’s commitment to honoring its equestrian heritage and memorializing a beloved employee and citizen who promoted art on display around the city.
Starting with a traffic analysis, Pond’s team of mobility experts recommended a roundabout for better traffic flow and improved vehicular and pedestrian safety. Allowing for an additional 600 peak hour trips, this solution reduced traffic demand on the central downtown signalized intersection, generating improved corridor and intersection operations.
The project team incorporated accessibility and inclusivity into the design, including ADA features at the roundabout and sidewalks along the new connector. On-street parking and multi-use path additions along the connector create an additional buffer between sidewalks and traffic for bicycle and pedestrian safety and connectivity.
As a high-traffic area, the City of Milton required creative scheduling solutions to maintain traffic flow. The design team prepared multistage construction phasing plans to allow for minimal inconvenience and delay.
“This is a major milestone for Milton and our growing downtown. It is a crucial connection in the city that should be a magnet for people who will live along it, eat at its restaurants, and otherwise enjoy it for years to come,” said City of Milton Transportation Engineer, Sara Leaders.
Pond’s role involved management of the design, including public involvement, roadway, traffic, drainage, lighting landscaping, and construction staging.
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