Two street-upgrade projects that have been in Midtown’s pipeline for years are expected to get underway in coming months, with a goal of better connecting the subdistrict and beefing up its bicycle lanes and pedestrian infrastructure.

Both the (delayed) 15th Street Extension and 5th Street Complete Street projects have awarded construction contracts and are scheduled to see work start in early 2024, according to Midtown Alliance.

The more extensive project, the 15th Street Extension, has undergone more than six years of planning and fundraising and a hiccup involving the bidding process that knocked its construction timeline back.

Plans call for extending 15th Street by two blocks west, toward Atlantic Station, to create a multimodal link from the Arts Center MARTA station to Williams Street, near the downtown Connector.

The proposed look of two new blocks of 15th Street, looking west toward Atlantic Station from West Peachtree Street. Courtesy of Midtown Alliance

Courtesy of Midtown Alliance

As is, 15th Street dead-ends at West Peachtree Street, next to the AMLI Arts Center apartment tower, walling off access to the transit hub for sections of Spring Street. The extended street will slip between apartment high-rises and consume part of what’s currently a gravel parking lot.

According to Midtown Alliance, the project was awarded to low bidder Reeves Young last month. The schedule calls for starting construction sometime early this year and completing the work in 18 months, per project officials.

The extended street will include three new lanes of public roadway between West Peachtree and Spring streets, including two left-turn lanes at both of those one-way streets. West of that, expect a single through-lane in each direction.  

Other features will include five-foot-wide bicycle lanes at sidewalk level in each direction, another five-foot zone dedicated to trees and street furniture, and 10-foot sidewalks on both sides of the street.

The bike lanes are designed to directly connect with the Arts Center MARTA station, existing and forthcoming residential and hotel developments, and other bike routes in the district, per Midtown Alliance.

The full two-block extension will consume GDOT right-of-way.

A section of the proposal showing 15th Street's new functionality. Courtesy of Midtown Alliance/Jacobs

Placement of the forthcoming 15th Street extension. Google Maps/Urbanize

More than $6 million in funding is in place to build the project, with about half of that coming from Georgia Department of Transportation and federal coffers. Midtown Improvement District funds and City of Atlanta impact fees are covering the bulk of remaining costs.

After receiving a grant from the Atlanta Regional Commission, city and GDOT officials began work to design the 15th Street project back in summer 2017. Engineering, traffic, and environmental studies took place over the next few years, and in 2021 the project was awarded $2 million in additional federal funding for construction.

Meanwhile, about a mile straight south, the 5th Street Complete Street project is expected to take 16 months to complete, beginning in early 2024. Midtown Alliance awarded the construction contract to low-bidder Hasbun Construction in November.

The $3-million project’s scope would span about .6 miles from Williams Street near the Connector in Tech Square to Myrtle Street in Midtown’s residential Garden District.

Rendering of a planned 5th Street complete streets makeover. Courtesy of Midtown Alliance

5th Street is already considered one of Atlanta’s most popular multimodal thoroughfares. Planned upgrades call for infill street trees to protect bike lanes, upgraded ADA ramps and crosswalks, better lighting, a new traffic signal at Williams Street, and a full repaving and re-striping of the street.


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