The Lilburn CID recently awarded an $87,000 contract to a Norcross-based firm in hopes of bettering the connectivity between businesses along U.S. Highway 29 and increasing the flow of traffic.
Moreland Altobelli Associates, Inc., a Norcross firm specializing in engineering, will complete the "Access Management Plan" by June 2013, according to Lilburn CID officials. Gwinnett County SPLOST, or Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, is paying for the cost of the study.
The study area extends down U.S. Highway 29, or Lawrenceville Highway, from Rockbridge Road to Ronald Reagan Parkway, which includes areas annexed by the city of Lilburn in 2011. The length of the area to be studied is approximately 4.3 miles.
Doing the study is "showing the market place that the CID is taking the initiative to create an environment for businesses to come and have easy access to their businesses," said Gerald McDowell, executive director of the Lilburn CID.
-- What do you think of the ability to access businesses along U.S. Highway 29? Is it a problem, or not? Let us know in the comment section. --
Specifically, the Norcross firm will provide a plan for better access to businesses along the route. This could include: traffic engineering methods that enhance the movement of people and goods, current site development improvements that will help with traffic, and coordination between business owners and city government.
Ever since the median went in on U.S. Highway 29, McDowell said he's heard complaints about it. He added that the Lilburn CID tried to , "but it didn't solve the problem of access to businesses off the corridor."
The study should give solutions to some of the challenges property owners and motorists are seeing, he said. One of those problems also includes making the area attractive to its own residents.
"Right now, we hear from businesses that the 50,000 people who live in 30047 go elsewhere to shop and to eat," McDowell said. "We need to hear from them why that is. Why do they go somewhere else? Why are they not patronizing the businesses along Highway 29?"
That's why the Lilburn CID believes it will be critically important for the public to participate in upcoming stakeholder meetings about the "Access Management Plan."
The Lilburn CID will release those dates. Contact them for more information at 678-380-1000.
-- Specific objectives of the plan are:
- Maintain highway capacity of U.S. Highway 29
- Improve traffic safety
- Improve vehicular access to parcels and businesses
- Maintain or improve efficient traffic flow
- Improve pedestrian and bicycle connectivity
- Promote long-term economic development of the corridor
-- Specific local issues identified in the request for proposals (RFP) within the corridor include:
- Businesses have closed as a result of the median on U.S. Highway 29, which makes it challenging for motorists to access certain properties
- There is a lack of U-turn ability in some spots; the Lilburn CID believes more of these would increase traffic to businesses.
- Traffic congestion because of Berkmar High School; the Lilburn CID believes improved access to and from the school will help this.
- There are traffic concerns of the future (possible) development of the Big League Dreams sport park, which could impact businesses near the intersection of U.S. Highway 29 and Indian Trail-Lilburn Road.
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