Atlanta (Buckhead People Mover)

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Buckhead People Mover

Atlanta, Georgia

(November 1996)


The Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), together with local business leaders, the City of Atlanta, area residents, MARTA and other interested parties have studied the feasibility of constructing an automated people mover or similar circulator system in the Buckhead area of Atlanta, Georgia. Buckhead has over 60,000 residents, 9 million square feet of office space, 4 million square feet of retail space (including two of the Southeast's most popular shopping malls), and 3,000 motel rooms. In addition, the area is currently served by two MARTA rail stations, Lenox and Buckhead.


Section 3035(s) of ISTEA directed FTA to enter into a multiyear grant agreement with ARC for $0.2 million to complete a conceptual engineering study of the proposed system. The study was completed in 1994. The study recommended initial development of a bus circulator on a combination of surface streets and dedicated busway in the Buckhead area. The project would be designed so that it could be converted to a higher volume, fixed guideway people mover system in the future, should demand grow sufficiently. A further recommendation of the study was the enactment of a special taxing district in the service area in order to share capital and operating costs of the system. To date, no action has been taken by the public or private sectors to implement the study's recommendations.

Capital costs for the bus circulator system were estimated at $20.4 million (1993). Operating and maintenance costs were estimated at $6.7 million per year (1993). Average daily ridership was estimated at 13,000.