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Old 08-12-2017, 08:01 PM
 
11,596 posts, read 7,719,047 times
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I have LONGED for Atlanta do this, I mean to the point where I almost can't stand that this place DOESN'T have one. I know several of us don't want the road to ruin the golden crescent, and I don't mean just specifically in that northern crescent area either.

Example.. I commute from north Gwinnett. I have to pick up my father from work in Newton County. I personally work in North Fulton AND Gwinnett (I work two jobs). I never commute to Atlanta unless I am taking my mother somewhere. So for me, mass transit wouldn't really help me alot asside from taking a few others cars off the roads I travel (I highly doubt it would be impactful for those roads as well) .. I can't take ANY highways to get to my jobs or my fathers job. It's 100% nerve wrecking streets. Going from North Gwinnett to Newton especially is a pain because it requires me to travel through the entire city of Lawrenceville, SR 20 through Loganville, and SR 81.. Then going to and from North Fulton is a pain because only a few streets cross the Chattahoochee and they're almost always congested. I would KILL for an interstate-grade limited access highway between I-85 / Mall of GA area to I-20 just east of Covington. It would make my commute 10x easier. Then of course going anywhere in North Fulton, or to Cobb would be 10x easier as well and I imagine ALOT of truck drivers (most who only come THROUGH Atlanta but not necessarily stopping here) would be at ease knowing they wouldn't need to see I-285.

Last month, I used I-840 for the first time in my life (It's Nashville's southern by-pass but is so far away from the city you may as well consider it an outer loop) and that road is super rural and no traffic. I know that this road is relatively new, well actually only some sections, others have been in operation for several years now. That road does not have many exits and the few that it does are entirely rural greenscape infact I personally believe it's a well designed road. I personally don't see that route becoming heavily congested within the next two decades.

The same goes for Hwy 99 (Houston's outer loop) - That road is about 200 miles long and about 40ish miles from downtown Houston. Although they planned well ahead and you can see by the design of the road that they can easily widen if it they ever needed to, that route is also mostly entirely rural and seems that it will remain that way for quite some time..

I personally don't believe a well planned outerbypass will EXPLODE with development in the Atlanta area.. the only thing that I can see MIGHT happening is a few outlet malls popping up on it sucking up the traffic from inter-suburb commuters (between Gwinnett and Cobb for example)

I know that Atlanta DOES need work in the mass transit department..and I greatly contend to this... but.. Mass transit won't fix everything.. I know this coming from Chicago... Chicago's transit system is state of the art as far as coverage is concerned, but if I want to go from suburb to suburb then its better to just drive.
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Old 08-12-2017, 09:37 PM
 
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Like metro Washington, DC the freeway infrastructure in metro Atlanta is simply inadequate to handle all of the development and population increase that has occurred in the last 30 years. I don't think an entire outer perimeter is needed. What is desperately needed is a northern crescent. I would say something that loosely follows the path of GA hwy 20.. that would connect I75 to 400, 85 and connect into GA316. That would help alleviate alot of traffic problems on the northside. This could be extended from 316 south to I20.. I dont believe it would need to go all the way around though. It could be done in stages. But the segment from 75 to 85 and 316 needs to happen. Maybe making it a toll road would help make it happen... even though I hate toll roads
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Old 08-12-2017, 09:51 PM
 
Location: Frisco, TX
1,879 posts, read 1,523,464 times
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I don't know much about the ins and outs of traffic in Atlanta but if you were to make a permiter further out from 285 in a way that Houston does, it would be much more expensive. To build it in an undeveloped area to avoid costly land acquirement would require it to reach into the North Georgia mountains. Houston is flat and has fewer natural barriers (besides the Gulf of course), and it still needs to charge tolls. And yes, eventually sprawl will catch up leading to more traffic. I feel like in town roads and freeways need to be improved before any new perimeter.
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Old 08-12-2017, 10:08 PM
 
10,324 posts, read 11,256,068 times
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It is interesting that you mention the I-840 bypass south of Nashville.

That bypass was originally planned to be a full outer-loop around Nashville, but increasing public concerns about cost and unchecked sprawl led to the northern half of the road being cancelled.

Before the road was cancelled, many Nashville area residents expressed fears that the construction of the road would lead to Nashville becoming "the next Atlanta" in terms of low-density sprawl, overdevelopment and traffic.

As for Atlanta's erstwhile Outer Perimeter...

The Atlanta Outer Perimeter (particularly the "Northern Crescent" portion of the erstwhile proposed road) appears to be deader-than-a-doornail.

Georgia's past Democrat-dominated state government of the late 1990's and early 2000's (particularly during the administration of past Georgia governor Roy Barnes) tried to ram the road through by cancelling the rest of the Outer Perimeter and moving ahead with the Northern Crescent portion of the road first between I-75 Northwest and I-85/GA 316 Northeast.

...But a powerful coalition of local landowners, local residents, road construction-averse Intowners, transit advocates and local and national environmentalists succeeded in overwhelmingly swaying public opinion against the road and getting it cancelled after a change in gubernatorial administrations in 2003....A change in gubernatorial administrations that happened in part because of the growing overwhelming public unpopularity of the Northern Crescent/Outer Perimeter superhighway proposal.

With the severe dislike of the Northern Crescent concept by affluent Northside suburbanites (the affluent Northside suburbanites that vote heavily in and dominate Georgia's electoral process) and affluent Intowners alike (not to mention that both local and national environmentalists view the road proposal as ground-zero in the battle to prevent the mass encroachment of suburban sprawl on the south end of their highly-cherished Blue Ridge Mountains chain), that road is deader than dead and it most likely ain't coming back anytime soon, if ever.

Heck, the state continues to have a massive amount of difficulty just simply trying to convince residents of Forsyth and Cherokee counties that their plans to widen Georgia Highway 20 to a divided highway are not a cover to try and revive the widely unpopular Northern Crescent/Outer Perimeter proposal.

Though, the officially-cancelled Northern Crescent/Outer Perimeter proposal does remain a popular concept with frustrated motorists who would like to have a way to traverse metro Atlanta's outer suburbs without having to drive on a sparse network of disconnected and discontinuous surface streets and roads.
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Old 08-12-2017, 10:23 PM
 
Location: Lake Spivey, Georgia
1,990 posts, read 2,327,940 times
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I have always kind of felt that Georgia 20 kind of fulfilled this mission on the east/ northeast sides of town (really with Georgia 20's route through Henry County, partially southeast, too) That said, I do realize that it IS NOT grade separated/ limited access like an expressway and does go through the congested downtown strips of many a small town. Still, it will get you to many parts of the north/east/south "exurbs" without trekking back to 285.
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Old 08-12-2017, 10:33 PM
 
Location: Georgia
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I've shifted from thinking we need a full outer loop to a 3/4 loop, excluding the north side. Too many mountains and exurban growth up there through which to carve a brand new freeway, which require pretty wide ROWs and much smoother grading than the actual terrain up there.
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:07 PM
 
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well putting a northern arc up in the mountains would be totally useless.. way too far from Atlanta so it would have zero impact on alleviating traffic on the existing perimeter. I understand concerns about increased sprawl but that could be alleviated by keeping exits at a bare minimum.. and make it more of an express route for trucks and other motorists. Try getting from Kennesaw to Lawrenceville. I tried taking GA20 once to avoid a mess on the top end of the perimeter and I would have been better off on the perimeter. It's just not really an option. You have a lot of cross commuting among the the northern suburbs but no real good east -west rought to connect any of them together. So all this traffic crams on the northern perimeter and on 400/75/85 when if there was another east-west option about 20 miles north of the existing perimeter .. a lot of traffic would be taken off those roads. I never realised the north GA mountains started 20 miles north of Sandy Springs
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Old 08-13-2017, 01:53 AM
 
10,324 posts, read 11,256,068 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AUGnative View Post
well putting a northern arc up in the mountains would be totally useless.. way too far from Atlanta so it would have zero impact on alleviating traffic on the existing perimeter. I understand concerns about increased sprawl but that could be alleviated by keeping exits at a bare minimum.. and make it more of an express route for trucks and other motorists. Try getting from Kennesaw to Lawrenceville. I tried taking GA20 once to avoid a mess on the top end of the perimeter and I would have been better off on the perimeter. It's just not really an option. You have a lot of cross commuting among the the northern suburbs but no real good east -west rought to connect any of them together. So all this traffic crams on the northern perimeter and on 400/75/85 when if there was another east-west option about 20 miles north of the existing perimeter .. a lot of traffic would be taken off those roads.
The proposal you described of keeping exits at a bare minimum and making the road more of an express route for trucks and through motorist traffic was actually the proposal for the Northern Arc that was rejected resoundingly by the Metro Atlanta and North Georgia voting public when then-incumbent Democratic governor Roy Barnes was defeated by Republican governor Sonny Perdue in 2002.

From a logistical standpoint, the construction of a Northern Arc/Outer Perimeter superhighway as a toll road with very few exits as a means of taking traffic off of a severely-congested Interstate 285 Perimeter appears to be a good idea which very few can reasonably argue against.

But from a political standpoint, the construction of a Northern Arc/Outer Perimeter is an idea that pretty much is completely impossible at this point in time.

One of the (multiple) major reasons why the Northern Arc was so unpopular with the public was because affluent outer suburbanites and exurbanites did not want a new all-terrain superhighway being constructed through their ascendant outer-suburban and exurban communities.

...That was back in 2002...15 years later in 2017, those outer-suburban and exurban areas are even more heavily-developed (and even more difficult, if not impossible, to construct a new superhighway through) than they were when they were less developed back in 2002.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AUGnative View Post
I never realised the north GA mountains started 20 miles north of Sandy Springs
The North Georgia Mountains may not start 20 miles north of Sandy Springs, but many residents in North metro Atlanta suburban and exurban counties like Cherokee, Forsyth and Hall often self-identify heavily with the North Georgia Mountains region.

Cherokee County's motto is "Where the metro meets the mountains," while Forsyth County has often politically and socially (and culturally) self-identified with the North Georgia Mountains region (...despite being apart of the Atlanta metro area, Forsyth County is not a member of the Atlanta Regional Commission but is instead a member of the Georgia Mountains Regional Commission along with Hall County, a membership that predates by decades Forsyth County's addition to the Atlanta metro area).

With many residents in North metro Atlanta suburban counties like Cherokee and Forsyth self-identifying with a region as cherished by many as the North Georgia Mountains region, they can be even more very protective at times than they might otherwise be, particularly when it comes to the proposed construction of an unpopular superhighway through an area that many view as being part of the mountains region.
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Old 08-13-2017, 11:52 AM
bu2
 
23,803 posts, read 14,543,878 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AUGnative View Post
Like metro Washington, DC the freeway infrastructure in metro Atlanta is simply inadequate to handle all of the development and population increase that has occurred in the last 30 years. I don't think an entire outer perimeter is needed. What is desperately needed is a northern crescent. I would say something that loosely follows the path of GA hwy 20.. that would connect I75 to 400, 85 and connect into GA316. That would help alleviate alot of traffic problems on the northside. This could be extended from 316 south to I20.. I dont believe it would need to go all the way around though. It could be done in stages. But the segment from 75 to 85 and 316 needs to happen. Maybe making it a toll road would help make it happen... even though I hate toll roads
The northern crescent is more beneficial for suburb to suburb commuters. For getting trucks and through traffic out of the city, a western and eastern bypass would be more useful, connecting 85 and 75 north of town to 20 and to 85 and 75 south of town.
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Old 08-13-2017, 02:51 PM
 
Location: East Atlanta
477 posts, read 589,884 times
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Once upon a time, there was an east-west interstate planned to run between Augusta, GA and Meridian, MS, by way of Macon, Columbus, and Montgomery to meet up with I-20 at both ends. There was also a north-south interstate planned to run from Savannah, GA to Knoxville, TN by way of Augusta and Toccoa to join I-75 in Knoxville. Not sure what happened to these proposals, but I'd prefer them to an Outer Loop.
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