MARIETTA — The Cumberland Community Improvement District received the county’s blessing Tuesday to pursue federal money that would help pay for an $8 million pedestrian bridge near SunTrust Park.
The proposed bridge would cross Cobb Parkway and connect the city of Smyrna and the corner of the Battery Atlanta according to Kim Menefee, the executive director of the Cumberland CID. On the Smyrna side, the bridge would begin between the Starbucks and the Steak ‘n Shake on Cobb Parkway.
“When you look at the pedestrians who want to travel from one side to another, there are many challenges and there are definitely safety hazards,” Menefee said. “We felt like an elevated crossing would help minimize pedestrian and vehicular conflict.”
In August, the Atlanta Regional Commission announced a call for projects that would be funded from fiscal year 2020 through 2025. The CID, which cannot accept money directly from the federal government, asked Cobb County to sponsor a couple such projects; Tuesday, commissioners voted unanimously to sponsor the pedestrian bridge as well as engineering and other services for portions of the Cumberland Core Loop.
“Places to locate a pedestrian bridge across Cobb Parkway/US-41 near The Battery/SunTrust Park are limited due to existing structures, overhead and underground utilities, and grades,” reads a fact sheet Menefee shared with the Marietta Daily Journal. “The recommended location is the one feasible crossing site between Spring Road and Cumberland Boulevard.”
The bridge would be ADA-accessible, with a switch-back ramp on the west side and an elevator on the east.
“We feel like the addition of this bridge will really enhance the safety of this crossing for fans,” Menefee said. “And make this side of the Battery so much more accessible to the city of Smyrna.”