A two-block extension of 15th Street has received a $2 million federal grant and is on track for an early 2022 groundbreaking, Midtown Alliance, which is leading the project, said this week. The grant is coming from the Federal Highway Administration and was announced by the Atlanta Regional Commission.
The project will extend 15th Street from its current endpoint at West Peachtree Street to Williams Street, which is two blocks west. The two blocks of new roadway will contain a vehicular travel lane in each direction and dedicated turn lanes to West Peachtree and Spring Streets.
The aim of the project, which officials expect to take 18 months to construct, is to both complete Midtown’s street grid and accommodate more modes of transportation in the area. The extension will feature 10-foot sidewalks on both sides of the street, as well as sidewalk-level bike lanes that will connect to the Arts Center MARTA Station and provide bike routes planned for Spring and West Peachtree Streets.
“There aren’t many new opportunities to build a new street in a dense urban environment, and this is the first one Midtown Alliance has built from scratch,” Midtown Alliance Director of Capital Projects Cladie Washburn said in a statement.
Plans also call for five-foot tree planting and furniture zones on both sides of the extended street.
The extension work coincides with another project planned for 15th Street: a Light Individual Transportation Lane ranging from 15th and West Peachtree to 15th and Piedmont Avenue.
The land on which the street extension will be built is owned by the Georgia Department of Transportation, which acquired it years ago when considering the possibility of building a 15th Street bridge, according to Midtown Alliance. Upon completion of the new project, the land will be transferred to the city of Atlanta.
“If Georgia DOT did not own this land, this project would most likely not be possible,” Washburn said.