For the first Atlanta Streets Alive of 2018, we partnered with the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition and Renew Atlanta to study one of the more hotly debated topics in the city: what to do with Dekalb Ave.
An industrial thoroughfare that connects sections of the city, Dekalb Ave is three lanes of trouble; there's a middle lane that changes traffic direction twice a day, potholes, and a general infrastructure that makes it unsafe for cyclists. One of the projects proposed in the 2015 Renew Atlanta Infrastructure Bond referendum was to update Dekalb Ave to better serve the people who use it.
We found that most people participating in the project use Dekalb Ave on a daily basis – for commuting and for getting around on the weekends.
Adding bike lanes is a major priority – most of the participants said they would add bike lanes, and a majority of those who said they would add bike lanes would then use Dekalb Ave for biking. One participant mused that he would use Dekalb Ave to bike all the way to the farmer's market in Decatur.
We then wanted to ask about people's commuting habits and what they considered a commuter – to foster more of a sense of empathy around commuting. We found that, while there was some variation among different opinions on commuting, most people think of commuters as people who leave the house at all for work. We also saw that a majority of the 200 participants were from Kirkwood and surrounding neighborhoods.
Mouse over the chord diagram below to see the results.
We asked participants to grab a green dot and place it on a grid corresponding to how satisfied they would feel about Dekalb Ave becoming a complete street, compared to how safe they would feel. As predicted, most people would feel safe and satisfied with Dekalb Ave as a complete street.
Check out some of our favorite photos from the experience.