ROSWELL, Ga. — One of Roswell’s oldest construction projects is complete, just in time for school.
On July 31, Roswell and County officials celebrated the official completion of the Hardscrabble Green Loop in front of Roswell High School. The complete street project, which the city first envisioned in 1998, extends along a portion of Hardscrabble Road, from King to Etris Road. It’s part of the larger Roswell Loop, which will eventually connect all of the city’s parks and schools with sidewalks and trails.
The Hardscrabble Green Loop added a 10-foot multi-use path on the south side of the road, a 5-foot sidewalk on the north side of the road, and 4-foot bike lanes between King Road and Etris Road. Additionally, the project added bike shoulders and a sidewalk to Chaffin Road from Hardscrabble to Northgate Trace.
One of the biggest changes is the roundabout at the intersection of Hardscrabble Road and Chaffin Road. It replaced a traffic signal with no turn lanes.
“This new roundabout is a key part of the project that has a been a popular topic of conversation among transportation staff, motorists and residents,” said Director of Transportation Muhammad Rauf.
This is the seventh roundabout in the City of Roswell and brings the total number of traffic signals down from 103 to 100, Rauf said.
Originally, the Hardscrabble roundabout was striped with two westbound lanes to accommodate traffic projections for the next 10 years. But after staff saw motorists struggling to navigate the striping and yield safely to traffic, they decided to restripe the lanes into one lane for safety, Rauf said.
“Staff expects the current striping to handle traffic demands for at least the next 5-10 years,” he said. “Staff is continuously evaluating all of the city’s roundabouts to improve safety and operations while still following best practices in the evolving industry of roundabouts.”
Construction for the Hardscrabble Green Loop began January 2018. The total project cost $7.2 million, including costs for engineering, right of way acquisition and construction. Of that total, $2.7 million was provided by local funding, $3.7 from GDOT and $800,000 from Fulton County.
“I know that it has been somewhat painful during the construction process, but I thank you all for your patience,” said Mayor Lori Henry. “All along, Steve Acenbrak [former director of transportation] kept saying to me, ‘This is painful, but when it’s done, people are going to love it.’ And that is exactly the case.”
Henry added that since the project is now complete, the Hardscrabble Green Loop will see more use.
“I know that as soon as school starts, so many more people are going to enjoy this,” Henry said. “The cycling community already does. The more roads we have like this, the more we get out and exercise and enjoy our community.”