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Historic Gateway

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Historic-Gateway-LogoOn September 27, 2010, the Mayor and City Council approved a contract for Parsons Brinckerhoff valued at just under $1.9 million to begin design on a project along Atlanta Street (SR 9) from the Chattahoochee River to Marietta Highway (SR 120).  The scope of this project includes a Concept, and Environmental Review document, and Preliminary Construction Plans.

On July 25, 2012, the Mayor and City Council selected a preferred concept for the project.  The typical section is based on Concept 2 (Narrow Median with Roundabout).  View the typical sections or view the entire concept.

On February 5, 2013, Georgia DOT approved the Concept Report for this project.  Click here to review the document.

In early 2016, the City, Georgia DOT, National Park Service and FHWA are working towards executed Memorandums of Agreement between the organizations specifying roles and responsibilities for construction. The submittal of the Environmental Assessment (EA) occurred on April 29, 2016.

Contact Us to provide input or comments.

HistGate at ChattPlant


Historic Gateway Project Background

Project Description

Atlanta Street is an important transportation corridor serving the communities and businesses of the City of Roswell as well as those in all of north Fulton County.  Traffic congestion and safety issues have been problematic on the reversible lane segment between Marietta Highway (SR 120) and the Riverside Road/Azalea Drive intersection.

The primary goal of this project is to make multimodal transportation and safety improvements along the Atlanta Street corridor that include the removal of the outdated and unsafe reversible lane system.  A secondary goal is to improve operations and safety at the intersection of Atlanta Street and Riverside Road/Azalea Drive, easily one of the worst intersections in north Fulton County.

This project will examine a multitude of solutions, and through an extensive public outreach and involvement process, develop a solution that best meets the needs of community residents, businesses, and commuters who rely on quality transportation services in the Atlanta Street corridor.  The project will seek context sensitive solutions (CSS) that integrate and balance community, aesthetic, historic and environmental values with transportation safety and efficient performance goals.

This project will include a series of public meeting that will be designed to solicit detailed input from the community to determine priorities in transportation elements that the project should address.  Following the meetings, alternatives will be developed and evaluated, concluding with a final transportation alternative.  The recommended alternative will proceed through a detailed environmental review and finally, be used to develop a set of design plans for eventual construction.

Purpose and Need

The Atlanta Street corridor has one of the highest crash rates of any facility in the City.  It also experiences a high level of congestion during the peak periods due to its regional significance as a major river crossing and alternate to SR 400.

Because the Atlanta Street corridor has a vital business district, this project will explore alternatives that provide quality transportation service, access and connectivity that will enhance and further encourage economic development in the corridor.  The corridor also includes an area that is rich in environmental and historic resources.  This project will strive to protect and promote these resources and explore ways to enhance pedestrian and bicycle access between the Chattahoochee River and the Historic Town Square.

The Purpose and Need will focus on congestion and safety, economic development, and multimodal access.  In addition, the Purpose and Need will be refined through the early public processes to insure ongoing community input into the needs and goals of the project.


There have been many studies of the Atlanta Street corridor over the past few decades recommending various improvements to address the corridor’s deficiencies.

  • In the mid-1990s, a Georgia DOT-commissioned study examined the need for additional capacity and recommended widening of the SR 9 bridge over the Chattahoochee River and widening the roadway to a four-lane median-divided facility from the river to the Historic Square.  The study’s findings were at odds with community ideas through this narrow and historic corridor and the study was abandoned.
  • Both the 2006 City of Roswell Transportation Plan and 2008 Roswell/Town Center/Atlanta Street LCI Corridor Study evaluated corridor and intersection improvement alternatives.  The focus was on the need for innovative solutions and concepts to reduce the impacts on the adjacent historic and environmentally- sensitive properties along the corridor.  A long-term solution of grade separation (placing one road over the other with ramp connections) at the intersection of SR 9 and Riverside Road/Azalea Drive was recommended and creative short-term solutions were evaluated at the planning level.
  • A short-term improvement study was conducted by GDOT in 2008 that evaluated the removal of the reversible lanes by restriping the existing three-lane segment into two permanent lanes southbound and one permanent lane northbound.  While the “two down/one up” solution faired a little better than the reverse when analyzed, the congestion was forecasted to increase significantly in the northbound PM peak period over time.  Ultimately, neither alternative was palatable to the City’s Transportation staff or Mayor and City Council so therefore, the previous long-term recommendation remained – the addition of new lanes in both directions.
  • In order to consider the potential impacts to historic properties in the SR 9 corridor, the City commissioned the 2009 Atlanta Street Cultural Resources Analysis Study.  This study identified 12 structures having historic value that could be impacted by an expansion of SR 9.  Sites designated in the National Register of Historic Places include Barrington Hall, Bullock Hall, and the Archibald Smith house.
  • In 2009, a study was commissioned to evaluate “non-traditional” engineering concepts and design solutions for the Atlanta Street corridor.  The study began with a wide variety of corridor and intersection concepts that was narrowed down to a preferred alternative.  The preferred concept included a “bowtie” concept, consisting of two roundabouts and a narrow median to manage access and narrow the roadway footprint through the most environmentally- and historically-constrained segments.  The study also identified short- and long-term solutions for the SR 9/Riverside Road/Azalea Drive intersection that would improve intersection capacity and safety and included short-term improvements that could ultimately be converted into a grade-separated intersection.
Although the corridor has been the subject of many studies, the City has no pre-determined solutions for the ultimate project.  An extensive and thorough public outreach process has been developed in order to work collaboratively with project stakeholders to understand the issues and concerns and develop a preferred solution that meets the transportation goals and fits within the community’s vision and goals for the entire corridor.

Study Process

The study process includes three main phases:

Phase 1

This phase focuses on public involvement and planning.  It is the phase with the greatest interaction between the Project Team and community.  In this phase, the project purpose and need is refined, alternatives considered and evaluated, and recommendations made for a preferred alternative.  During this phase, initial coordination will begin with the resources agencies (i.e. Georgia DOT, Federal Highway Administration, Environmental Protection Agency) to understand their concerns and requirements.

Phase 2

This phase focuses on the environmental review process.  This process ensures compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).  During this phase, detailed technical environmental studies will be completed and an Environmental Assessment (EA) will be prepared.  Coordination with the resources agencies is critical during this phase in order to meet the local, state, and federal requirements for the project.  Once the EA is prepared, a public hearing will be held.  After the public hearing has been held, if it has been determined that the project will have no significant impacts, a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) will be issued for the selected alternative and the implementation of the project can begin assuming funding is in place.

Phase 3

During this phase, preliminary plans for the selected alternatives will be prepared.  Final design plans will be prepared in a later project and any right-of-way acquisitions will take place once funding has been established.

Study Timeline

View the schedule as of April 2016