Colorful murals of flowers, fish and other designs could replace standard crosswalks along Adina Drive in proposals by Livable Buckhead. The idea for the on-street art is to draw interest, provide wayfinding and increase use of the multiuse trail.
The crosswalks would have to be approved by the city before they are installed.
“We want to generate community excitement and get people engaged,” Denise Starling, the executive director of Livable Buckhead said about the crosswalk art. “It’s about providing a pedestrian option that’s really engaging.”
PATH400 is a multiuse trail that runs along Ga. 400 and, when complete, will be 5.2 miles long. Livable Buckhead is spearheading the construction of the trail. Livable Buckhead held an event in the Lindbergh neighborhood Nov. 4 where visitors could vote on their favorite proposed crosswalk design.
Starling said officials have not done an analysis on how much the designs would cost, and are right now only looking to see whether the public agrees with the idea.
Three local artists submitted designs for the three crosswalks where Adina Drive intersects with Lindbergh Drive, Morosgo Drive and Sidney Marcus Boulevard. The artists were contacted through the Chalk Art Guild, a local association of artists, Starling said.
Cathryn Bozone submitted designs with patterns of animals, food and plants that are blue, green and purple. Bozone wrote that the concept is to remind commuters of the “value of little things.”
“The imagery reminds us to value the little slices of life like nature, animals and food that are often overlooked in the city,” Bozone said.
Meg Mitchell submitted designs for the three crosswalks that are all similar to one another with green backgrounds, flower patterns and text that says “PATH400.”
“My concept was designed to be a carpet of flora and fauna unfolding before the user, connecting the enchanting green spaces that surround PATH400 like a bridge,” Mitchell wrote.
Chelsey Austin’s design calls for each individual crosswalk to be widely different in its look. Austin’s design was the most popular at the event, and participants who voted for her said they were drawn to the differences among her designs.
In her proposal, the intersection at Sidney Marcus Boulevard features one crosswalk with a tree design, one that says “Buckhead” and one that looks like a brick path. The Morosgo Drive intersection features one crosswalk showing a skyscraper, another covered by a green map, with the third depicting balloons in a sky. In her Lindbergh Drive intersection designs, one crosswalk depicts an ocean design with mermaids and turtles, another is made to look like a broken path and wooden bridge, and the third says “Buckhead.”
“I like the way it’s so diverse and it actually says Buckhead. You want to identify the area you’re in,” said Debra Ivey, a Buckhead resident who voted at the event.
Ivey said the addition of the crosswalks would help people find their way to PATH400. “They would definitely help. I live in the area[but] it’s still so confusing,” she said.
Maria Earl, another resident who voted for Austin’s design, said she liked that it “stands out and it is very colorful.” She also said she thinks the crosswalks would “create buzz” and encourage more people to use PATH400.
If Livable Buckhead moves forward with the art, it will be printed with thermoplastic, not painted on the street, the same method the city used to install rainbow crosswalks to honor the LGBT community at 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue in Midtown earlier this year, Starling said. The thermoplastic is more durable and can last up to 10 years.
Starling said she has not approached the city with the designs yet.
“Similar projects already exist, so there should be no reason for pushback,” Starling said in an email.
Starling said the designs will conform to safety standards. Voting on the designs, which are posted online, will be open until Dec. 11. Visit path400greenway.org/crosswalks for more information.