Cobb’s Department of Transportation completed the sixth and final year of the 2005 SPLOST. In the six years of the program, DOT has started construction on more than 94 percent of projects and completed construction on more than 84 percent of the 310 total projects in the program.
During the past year, 34 projects, valued at about $80 million, were bid for construction. Construction began on five thoroughfare and roadway safety projects, leaving only four of the original 44 projects left. Construction also began on four thoroughfare and eight roadway safety improvement projects. In addition, 48 streets, or about 32 miles, were resurfaced.
Some of the key 2011 projects from the 2005 SPLOST program:
This $21 million project consists of 3.58 miles, exclusive of side streets, widening from four-lane divided roadway to six-lane divided roadway from approximately 1,800 feet south of Burnt Hickory Road to the intersection of Barrett Parkway and Cobb Parkway. This includes widening the existing bridge over Noonday Creek and a 10-foot asphalt multi-use trail as well as installation and modification of traffic signals and ATMS system. Scheduled completion for this project is summer 2013.
Cobb County’s Second Roundabout at County Line Road
This project consists of approximately five miles of safety and operational roadway improvements on County Line Road between Due West Road and Mars Hill Road. Improvements include reconstruction of five intersections, replacement of the bridge over Altoona Creek, replacement of the culvert north of Burnt Hickory Road and widening of the existing two-lane roadway with sidewalk and the construction of the county’s second roundabout at County Line Road at Burnt Hickory Road.
This four-lane divided road which runs from Chastain Road east across Town Point Drive and Barrett Lakes Boulevard is nearing completion. It’s expected to be in use by spring 2012, two years after it began construction. Phase one of the Big Shanty Extension began construction as a part of the federal stimulus package. It will provide a new crossing under I-75 and will provide significant congestion relief to Chastain Road and give Kennesaw State University students better access to their university and surrounding amenities.
Lower Roswell Road
Lower Roswell Road (East) is a Safety and Operational Improvement project from Davidson Road to Timber Ridge Road which began construction in April. The project will add 4-foot bike lanes, 8-foot asphalt trail and 5-foot sidewalks for the entire length of the project. Left-turn lanes and right-turn lanes are provided where warranted. The intersection of Lower Roswell Road and Timber Ridge Road will be the location of the county’s third roundabout in Cobb County. The construction should last 18-24 months.
Windy Hill-Macland Road Connector
Construction for this $51 million SPLOST project was completed in the summer with a ribbon cutting event held in August. This project was designed to alleviate stop and go traffic on the Powder Springs/Austell Road corridors by adding an additional two-mile stretch of roadway for west Cobb travellers to reach U.S. Highway 41 and Interstate 7 and has vastly improved connectivity and travel times for these commuters.
Design for the new paratransit facility at the Cobb Community Transit Multi-Use Transit Center is complete. This facility, which will be housed at the main hub of CCT near the Marietta Transfer Center, is expected to begin construction in early 2012. It is being constructed to accommodate paratransit reservations, scheduling and dispatch, certifications, as well as employee and bus parking. Cobb County Senior Services will occupy space and operate the Senior Services Transportation Program from this facility and the Senior/Disabled Voucher Programs will also operate from here.
Breeze Card machines were installed in all three major Cobb Community Transit transfer stations at Acworth, Cumberland and Marietta giving riders the opportunity to purchase cards and add value to existing cards. These cards offer an easy way to pay for riding CCT.
The facility will include a “learning center” for travel training programs such as “Get on the Bus Gus.” This program is designed to provide training for seniors and individuals with disabilities to help them become confident bus riders and encourage them to transition from using paratransit service to the less costly fixed route service.
In 2011 the Cobb County Airport-McCollum Field completed realignments of the south parallel taxiway and expanded the south apron. The realignment of the south taxiway allowed the new instrument landing system glideslope antenna to be activated allowing aircraft to land in poor weather conditions. The south apron expansion has provided more area for the aircraft to maneuver on the once congested apron. This project was funded primarily with nearly $3 million in federal and state grants.
The Cobb Department of Transportation successfully completed a year long effort to develop a Comprehensive Service and Marketing Plan for Cobb Community Transit which focused on evaluating and identifying needed improvements for existing local and express bus routes and paratransit services, as well as assessing opportunities for improving cost-effectiveness and increasing revenues. The study also developed short-range plans for improving existing services and supporting a possible future high-capacity transit project.
The Cobb County Department of Transportation was competitively awarded $1.36 million in federal funds to conduct an Alternatives Analysis study in the U.S. Highway 41/Interstate 75 corridor between Acworth and the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority Arts Center Station. This corridor would link the MARTA’s transit network with key Cobb County destinations, including the Cumberland and Town Center Area Community Improvement Districts, Kennesaw State University and Southern Polytechnic State University, as well as numerous large shopping centers and Dobbins Air Reserve Base. The corridor would also link all four county commission districts and the cities of Smyrna, Marietta, Kennesaw and Acworth.
The department achieved 100 percent federal funding in the amount of $3.9 million and initiated a project to expand our Adaptive Traffic Control System, the second largest system of its kind in the nation, to add 75 traffic signals in the greater Town Center area. Cobb County’s ATCS will include 159 traffic signals and utilize computer systems to provide real-time traffic signal timing adjustments to reduce traffic delays and improve mobility in our highest traffic activity centers, the greater Cumberland/Galleria and Town Center areas, where unpredictable traffic conditions routinely occur.
DOT achieved 100 percent state funding and completed initial installation of a Bluetooth travel time monitoring system at 19 locations in the greater Town Center area including county arterial roads Cobb Parkway, Barrett Parkway and Chastain Road. The system provides data for real-time system performance review and to enhance traveler information systems including a real-time congestion map. This will be used for incident management and to measure effectiveness of the signal timing systems to reduce traffic delays and improve mobility.
The Cobb DOT Utilities Section issued 1,200 permits to public and private entities for utility work within the right-of-way with an average turn-around of three days. These permits generated fees totaling approximately $163,815. Through the permit review and inspection process, employees provide a valuable service in monitoring work that affects the county’s roadways and infrastructure.