At Long Last! Final Paving Work Begins on East Howard, N. Candler and Barry St

Huzzah! I bet this news will make a lot of local residents and business owners happy.

The impact

The final stage of work on Phase 2 of the Downtown Decatur Storm Drainage Improvements project is expected to start on Wednesday, July 12. This includes milling, rebuilding, and repaving the streets in the project area, including North Candler Street, East Howard Avenue, and Barry Street.

The details

Phase 2 of the Downtown Decatur Storm Drainage Improvements includes replacement of undersized and deteriorated storm drainage facilities and will reduce or eliminate frequent flooding on private properties in the Old Decatur neighborhood. During construction, the work was expanded to include renewal of a failing sanitary sewer system in the same community. This project was originally planned almost 40 years ago, replaces some of the oldest infrastructure in metro Atlanta, and will complete major planned improvements to the upper Peavine section of the downtown drainage system. Construction commenced in July, 2016, and was expected to take up to 12 months.

How to manage

Vehicular access will be limited and on-street parking will not be available on the affected streets during the work. Pedestrian access will remain open throughout the project area. The street and paving improvements are expected to take about 2 weeks, weather permitting.

The work area is shown below. Click for larger view.

Detour Alert! CSX Will Rebuild Downtown Rail Crossings Mid-June

EXTREME DETOUR everyone. This should be a fun time for Decatur commuters.

That said, we should also take the long view and remember that this rebuild is a LONG time coming. (I have posts on this dating back to at LEAST 2009!  Man. I’m getting old.)

From the city’s Decatur Makeover website

Details are still being finalized but now’s the time to start planning ahead: Effective the morning of Monday, June 19, CSX will begin rebuilding their crossings at Candler and McDonough Streets.

Work will continue uninterrupted until its completion which is projected to take roughly seven days. Both intersections will be closed and will remain closed until the work is finished.

A detour map will be posted here during the week of June 12 so stay tuned.

Project details

This collective project, including rail crossings at both McDonough and Candler, will significantly improve accessibility and safety for pedestrians and bicyclists, further encouraging those who live in Winnona Park, the McDonough-Adams-Kings Highway community, and other neighborhoods south of the CSX rail corridor to walk and bike into downtown Decatur.

 The improvements will provide gentler slopes on the north side of both crossings resulting in an accessible path for persons in wheelchairs or those using strollers, and a much safer route located outside the railroad crossing gates for pedestrians and bicyclists. Presently, pedestrians and bicyclists have to share the roadway with vehicles at these crossings.

In addition to improvements at the crossings, there will now be new pedestrian crosswalks where none presently exist — on the east side of both intersections and just north of the Candler crossing connecting to the sidewalk along the old Depot property.

Finally, improved vehicular mobility is also a project priority. Both crossings will include new traffic signals on both sides which will allow protected left turns on all legs of the two crossings.

You can view the schematics in the original post.

Photo courtesy of Joel

More North McDonough Overnight Closures This Week

Blame the continued inconvenience on whoever covertly installed underground utilities along N. McDonough and didn’t mark them!

From the Decatur Makeover website

Our last two rounds of temporary closures on North McDonough both encountered unmarked underground utilities, delaying completion and requiring a third round to complete the work. Accordingly, North McDonough Street will again be closed overnight between Trinity Place and East Maple Street beginning Sunday, April 30, and continuing each night until our anticipated completion by the morning of Friday, May 5.

As before, each temporary closure will begin at 11:00pm and end the following morning at 6:00am. Assuming no further complications, everything’s expected to finally be completed with this round.

This work will ultimately result in a new storm drainage system as part of the North McDonough streetscape improvements.

Detour Alert: McDonough @ Howard Intersection Closed This Saturday; No Impact to Tour deCatur Race

From the Extreme Makeover: Downtown Decatur website

The impact

The intersection at McDonough and Howard will be closed again on Saturday, March 11 to complete the grading and resurfacing associated with the reconstruction of the railroad crossing. This will allow the pavement to be raised to provide a gentler slope on the north side of the crossing and an accessible path for persons in wheelchairs or those using strollers. Parts of the PATH Foundation’s Stone Mountain Trail near the crossing will be closed to bicycle traffic as well.

How to manage

There will be no traffic through the McDonough-Howard intersection on Saturday, March 11. However, East and West Howard and North McDonough will be open to local traffic. Consult the detour map below for greater detail (click images for larger view).

No impact is expected on the Tour deCatur road race on Saturday morning.

Here’s a useful map…

N. McDonough Rail Crossing Rebuild Is Finally Underway

You’re Your teenage children were probably still in diapers when talk began about redesigning and rebuilding the N. McDonough rail intersection.

From Mayor Garrett’s recent email blast…

…work has begun on reconstruction of the North McDonough railroad crossing. Parts of the PATH Foundation’s Stone Mountain Trail have been demolished and will be replaced temporarily with compacted gravel during construction. The larger project, which includes rail crossings at both McDonough and Candler, will significantly improve accessibility and safety for pedestrians and bicyclists, further encouraging those who live in Winnona Park, the McDonough-Adams-Kings Highway community, and other neighborhoods south of the CSX rail corridor to walk and bike into downtown Decatur.

More details can be found on the Decatur Extreme Makeover website.

East Decatur Greenway Trail Construction Begins Next Week


A sign posted at the entrance of the Katie Kerr neighborhood announced that construction of the East Decatur Greenway Trail will begin next week.  (If you didn’t get that already from the post title! 🙂 )

Here’s the text in full from the picture above, courtesy of Kat …

Construction of the East Decatur Greenway Trail will begin November 7, 2016 and continue through March 2017.  The trail will be located on county right-of-way on Katie Kerr Drive.  We will do everything possible to minimize any impact to your daily routine during construction.  Please be patient with their task of clearing and grading your area.

Contact for questions or concerns:

Jonathan McCaig

Construction Manager

PATH Foundation

[email protected]

See for a trail map and more information.

As shown in the map below, the East Decatur Greenway will connect from a new community park on S. Columbia Drive – a former vacant gas station, up Katie Kerr Drive around the backside of the United Methodist Children’s Home to the new Avondale MARTA mixed use development.

Click the map below to enlarge…


Decatur Launches Website To Help Residents Keep Up With Construction Projects

decatur aerial

Check out the city’s new website,, to keep up-to-date on all the construction around the city for the next year and a half.  Here’s the release…

The City of Decatur has launched a new website and communications program — dubbed “Extreme Makeover: Downtown Decatur Edition” — to keep residents informed and moving throughout an upcoming period of potentially disruptive construction projects.

“It’s a fairly unique situation,” said Deputy City Manager Hugh Saxon, “one requiring a unique response.”

Between streetscape overhauls, infrastructure repair, safety enhancements, and development projects, there’s a lot planned or in the works for the city’s downtown over the next 12 to 18 months. And much of it involves overlapping timelines, which amplifies the potential for inconvenience.

Officials hope better, more accessible information will give residents the tools they need to plan ahead and work their way around any disruptions.

From now until the list of planned projects is complete, the website will serve as the hub of a larger program to keep residents informed — offering timely, ongoing status updates, email and social media alerts, and overviews in the city’s Focus newsletter.

Included are opportunities to:

  • + Review a map of projects in various stages of implementation.
  • + Read the latest status updates for what to expect, and what to avoid.
  • + Sign up for email alerts issued whenever new circumstances arise.
  • + Follow the city on Facebook and Twitter.

Residents are invited to visit the site and join the email list at or via the city’s website at