Changes to Peachtree Road in Buckhead

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Many of us have been stuck in a left turn or behind someone making a left on Peachtree Road in Buckhead at some point in time.

The Georgia's Department of Transportation is now considering adding a double left turn lane along nearly four-mile stretch of Peachtree from Pharr Road in the north to Deering Road in the south.

"We have a very high crash rate on the corridor. We've had over 800 crashes in the last five years just on that stretch alone," said Andrew Heath, GDOT Traffic Engineer.

Heath told a gathering of the Buckhead Council of Neighborhoods that the double left turn lane would ease the high crash rate on the Buckhead Peachtree Corridor, but residents like Mark Busch are skeptical.

"I don't think it'll be easier cause there'll just be more traffic. I think people will be waiting in line more, it's just going to create more traffic as it is," said Busch.

GDOT said a northbound lane would be squeezed out to install the double turn lane from Peachtree Battle to Pharr, leaving three southbound lanes and two northbound lanes.

"Well there's a challenge with traffic any time you try to do something but I just hope they try to think about it and plan well," said motorist Charlie Battle.

The six lanes on Peachtree are only ten feet wide each. Historic buildings, environmental concerns, costs are reasons why it can't easily be widened.

"There's currently sixty feet of right away so it's very limited right of way with the current configuration we have," said Heath.

The plan also includes the center double turn with two lanes of traffic lanes on each side and two bicycle lanes outside of them from Peachtree Battle south to Deering.

"Which I think would be a good thing because a lot of times you've got bikes on the sidewalks and bikes on this inner lane especially blocking traffic," said Buckhead resident Dan Sheedy.

GDOT heard a host of concerns at the meeting, saying they seek public input before trying to fix Peachtree.

"And ultimately to get their feedback and opinions on the project we're proposing," said Heath.

Heath also said the general public is invited to a community meeting about the proposed changes to Peachtree Road on Thursday October 29th from 5 to 7 p.m at Sheperd Center in Atlanta. He said if approved, the project on Peachtree could begin sometime next summer.