Brookhaven City Council brought cheers from the audience April 12 when it approved a bicycle, pedestrian and trail plan for the city.
Implementation of the plan is expected cost approximately $9.2 million in a short-term phase; $25.2 million in a mid-term phase; and $32 million in a long-term phase lasting 15 to 20 years.
Betsy Eggers, chair of the Peachtree Creek Greenway, has been riding her bike for a year and said she was thrilled the plan was approved unanimously by council.
“We are very excited they unanimously changed this to a short-term project. That means we still have five to 10 years to go, but it gives us momentum to be able to keep what has started going,” for the Peachtree Creek Greenway, she said.
Eggers’ husband, Jack Honderd, said the plan is a win-win for cycling enthusiasts and pedestrians but also for those who prefer to drive. With more people walking and riding bikes, there are fewer cars on the road, meaning less traffic, he said.
“This creates choices for all citizens,” Honderd said. “A lot of people are interested in walking or biking to nearby destinations, like a shopping center or a park … but they don’t feel safe doing it. This plan gives them that choice.”
Brookhaven City Council a year ago approved a $96,866.12 contract with Pond and Company to develop a comprehensive bicycle, pedestrian and trail plan for the city. The project’s focus was to develop plans aimed at creating a map for future investment as well as a prioritized list of feasible and cost-effective projects.
The plan approved includes 20.4 miles of new “sharrows,” lanes shared by bikes and cars; 6.9 miles of new bicycle lanes or cycle tracks; 31.3 miles of new sidewalks and 38.7 miles of new multi-use trails.