The purpose of the Atlanta to Athens Connectivity and Mobility Study is to optimize travel efficiency and safety and promote economic development for the Atlanta-Athens corridor. The Georgia Department of Transportation undertook a study to find ways to improve transportation for residents and businesses by strengthening connectivity and improving access to employment centers, educational facilities, entertainment, and recreation.
This study started in late 2011 and is scheduled to be completed by late summer 2013. The methodology consists of three levels of analysis, regional, corridor and segment which will utilize different technical tools to identify a wide variety of potential improvements. The first level is focusing on the mobility and travel needs throughout the study area using the regional travel demand model developed for this study. The study team is analyzing travel conditions along this corridor using a variety of performance measures, including: LOS, travel time, delay, safety, and concerns with roadway geometry. A range of improvement strategies are being compiled with special consideration given to innovative improvement concepts to provide congestion relief while reducing the right-of-way-requirements and impacts on adjacent communities. The next level of analysis is focusing on the individual travel corridors within the study area utilizing dynamic traffic assignment procedures and analysis techniques. The goal from this level of more detailed evaluation (mesoscopic) is to provide a list of potential improvement concepts or templates that can be selectively applied to various situations throughout the study area. The focus of this evaluation is to assess the degree of potential success associated with each of the identified improvement concepts, i.e., which improvement concepts are the most efficient and cost-effective while addressing the goals and objectives of the affected community. Finally, a detailed micro level analysis using micro-simulation of selected case studies will assist with the development of these templates which can be applied throughout the study area. The results from this innovative multi-level technical analysis will provide an improvement plan for the entire study area and for individual segments that will include capacity and operation improvements as well as the examination and required coordination with potential land use policies.