By Carlen Ruth Hultgren
At a lively EACA (East Atlanta Community Association) meeting on April 13, representatives from GDOT (Georgia Department of Transportation) presented plans and visuals for the upcoming Maynard Terrace traffic circle, answered questions, and listened to comments.
Shannon Dodd and other members from GDOT team, got everyone up to speed starting with October 2019 (the last meeting with neighbors), and presented design changes that stemmed from those meetings. There was a public virtual meeting in 2020 and subsequent public comment through the regular GDOT process. The project is on schedule and the “let to construction” date is anticipated for summer 2022.
Affected property owners, those whose property touches the roundabout, will be contacted before construction starts. Shannon opened the door to questions at any time. (her email is below)
Matt Thompson (GDOT) also made a presentation about the project. He showed the project sketch and talked about detours that will be needed. An animated Q&A followed.
Q: Would it be possible to include sound buffer panels in this project
A: Funding is very focused so using the money for something other than the safety improvement wouldn’t be possible, although it is a good idea.
Q: Westbound ramp on I-20 has a yield sign that seems misplaced. Was that considered as part of this plan?
A: That hasn’t been considered as part of this plan. The district safety engineer, Paul DeNard, will investigate that.
Q: Traffic that wants to go north from the exit ramp currently often backs up onto the highway at peak times. Is this design meant to ease that backup?
A: Yes, that’s exactly what this design is meant to address. More signage may be needs so drivers understand what they are supposed to do. There also is a backup problem with people turning left from Maynard onto Memorial.
Q: Could there be a two-way cycle track at this intersection?
A: There is an extra-wide shoulder area that cyclists could use but they have not looked at a two-way cycle track.
Q: How many trees are you planning to remove between ramp and McPherson Avenue.
A: They don’t know.
Q: Does northbound Maynard Terrace south of the roundabout really need two lanes?
A: Yes, or else that traffic would back up into the neighborhood.
Q: Directional pavement markings farther out would be good.
A: Excellent suggestion; they also plan overhead signs.
Q: Is anything being done about the stormwater problem that already exists at this intersection, especially considering the proposed development north of McPherson?
A: This is meant to address the stormwater on the pavement and should alleviate some of the runoff. The project isn’t replacing the culvert, but their study says this should not increase the stormwater problem. The proposed new development would fall under city regulations and hasn’t been considered as part of this plan.
Q: We’ll be transferring a lot of traffic to Maynard and Memorial. Can that intersection take it? Could a left-turn only lane be added to that intersection?
A: They drew up a plan for that, but it doesn’t necessarily fall into this project. It could be done in the future.
Questions from the chat will be compiled and sent to Shannon and answers will be shared later with EACA members. Shannon can be reached directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also contact transportation@EACA.net to get involved in this and other neighborhood projects involving our streets and traffic patterns. You can join EACA at Membership@EACA.net. See the EACA website for member benefits and other ways you can get involved.