Hooch 9/5

The City of Roswell is working with Sandy Springs on plans to construct a pedestrian bridge on the east side of the existing Ga. 9 bridge over the Chattahoochee River.

ROSWELL, Ga. — On Aug. 26, the Roswell City Council unanimously approved an intergovernmental agreement with the City of Sandy Springs Aug. 26 for increased funding to construct a pedestrian bridge over the Chattahoochee River. The bridge would be located east of the existing Ga. 9 bridge at the border of Roswell and Sandy Springs. 

The agreement is a revised version of a previous agreement to comply with new requirements set by the National Environmental Policy Act, GDOT and the Federal Highway Administration for additional studies. The new requirements increase the amount of work for the project’s consultant, bringing the total construction cost up.

The consultant’s additional fee for the studies is $112,155, which would be split evenly between both cities. Sandy Springs already agreed to pay their share, $56,077, the previous week. 

The project was originally funded in part 11 years ago by Sen. Johnny Isakson who helped earmark $3 million in federal funds for the bridge. Roswell entered an intergovernmental agreement with Sandy Springs to split that money equally to use as a seed fund.

The pedestrian bridge is designed to be 12 feet wide and will connect Azalea Drive/Riverside Road with Roberts Drive. 

Roswell resident Janet Russell said she had some concerns about the placement of the pedestrian bridge.

“Why is it placed on the east side of the bridge when everybody lives on the west side of the bridge?” Russell said. “This is not a lifestyle bridge. There’s a difference between lifeline and lifestyle.

She added that she wants to see the bridge built, but more importantly, she wants the bridge to be for the people who live in the area and need it for their daily lives.

Deputy Director of Transportation Rob Dell-Ross said the designs for the pedestrian bridge on the east side of Ga. 9 were shown at several public meetings and ultimately approved by a past City Council.

“The decision to construct it on one side of the bridge instead of both sides of the bridge was a funding decision based on the size of the federal earmark and the funding we had at the time,” he said. “On the Sandy Springs end of the bridge, on the east side, you’ll see residential areas on the east side of the bridge. In Roswell, you’ll see destinations on both sides of Ga. 9.”

He added that the pedestrian bridge would work with future trail systems as a connection.

In other action at the Aug. 26 meeting, the City Council voted unanimously to approve the second reading of an amendment for law enforcement to use automated speed detection cameras. The amendment will allow RedSpeed Georgia to install automated school zone speed enforcement cameras within local school zones, as agreed upon at the last City Council meeting.

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