Q&A on the News

Q: What happened to the plans to transform the Peachtree Street bridges over the Downtown Connector and I-85 north into “Gateways” with new lighting and landscaping?

—Harry Shuman, Atlanta

A: The design plans for the Peachtree Street bridge enhancements have been approved by the Georgia Department of Transportation and bidding and construction could begin later this year. The permitting process on the improvements to the bridges, which span the Downtown Connector both downtown and in Midtown, are under way, a spokesperson for Central Atlanta Progress, told Q&A on the News in an email.

The makeover includes colored lighting under the bridges and the words “Peachtree Street” in lights. Sculptured fences and sidewalks will be constructed on the surface level, according to the Midtown Alliance. The Atlanta Downtown Improvement District also is involved in the project, which initially was purposed in 2012. Phase One originally was projected to be completed by spring 2014.

Q: Why have the Atlanta-Fulton County Public Library hours been reduced? Has the library system’s funding been reduced? Have any employees been fired?

—Peter Remsen, Sandy Springs

A: Budget cuts resulted in the reduction of hours and staff for the Atlanta-Fulton County Public Library System. Hours were cut from 1,562 hours a week to 996 and staff positions were realigned and cut. Seventy part-time staff members were let go and 50 full-time positions were frozen “after regular attrition,” a county spokeswoman told Q&A on the News in an email. The system plans to open the East Roswell, Palmetto and Wolf Creek libraries in the next few months as part of a $275 million program.

Andy Johnston wrote this column. Do you have a question about the news? We’ll try to get the answer. Call 404-222-2002 or email q&a@ajc.com (include name, phone and city).

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