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Sounds Like Buckhead Traffic is Nearing Freakout Levels

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Anyone who's felt that Buckhead is a little less passable these days is not alone. An Atlanta Business Chronicle article Friday hinted that traffic concerns in the upscale submarket may be reaching a "tipping point," with city council rep Howard Shook chiming in, "People always complain about (Buckhead) traffic, but about a year ago I started to detect a different tone." (One potential culprit: 5,000 new apartments opened in the neighborhood since 2012). Bringing the issue to a boil is an appeal filed recently by Meridian Buckhead's condominium association in hopes of stopping Regent Partners' massive mixed-use proposal next to Buckhead's MARTA station. Condo owners fear that project — which would have enough office space to fill half of Bank of America Plaza, plus more than 300 condos and apartments — will "exacerbate traffic conditions" on key thoroughfares such as Piedmont Road. Some officials told the newspaper that Buckhead's traffic troubles are simply the kind of growing pains plaguing urbanizing cities across the country right now. Buckhead CID executive director Jim Durrett offered that "congestion hot spots" are being identified now but a long-term solution calls for a more walkable, bikeable Buckhead with more investment in public transit. (See our Q&A with Durrett on this topic right here). One positive note: Ridership at Buckhead's two MARTA stations has reportedly surged 42 percent since 2012.