The Henry County transit master plan is nearly complete. Earlier this month, planners presented the final plan recommendations. The board of commissioners will consider adopting the plan in early 2022.
Transit Plan Final Recommendations
The transit plan final recommendations includes three phrases. They include the following:
- Short-term (1–5 years)
- Mid-term (6–16 years)
- Long-term (17–30 years)
During the short term, planners are recommending one local fixed bus route. Earlier this year, the plan identified seventeen possible bus routes. From those routes, the plan selected a route in McDonough and Stockbridge. Specifically, the route would connect the McDonough square, county offices, Piedmont Henry and North Henry Blvd.
Concurrently, Henry County has applied for federal funds to help launch the bus route. Earlier this month, commissioners approved the 2021 application for federal funds. It included three years of operations for one local bus route. The county will learn next year whether it receives the federal dollars.
The county plans to maintain its current “Dial-a-Ride” service. A rebranding of the transit system to Henry Connect is also proposed.
Beginning in 2027, the transit plan recommends four other local bus routes. They include the following routes:
- McDonough to Southlake Mall
- Highway 20 / McDonough to Hampton
- Highway 42 / McDonough to Locust Grove
- Jonesboro Road / McDonough to Jonesboro
In addition, an Xpress bus route from Stockbridge to Hartsfield-Jackson Airport is part of the mid-range plan. The county would also look to build an operations and maintenance facility.
Finally, the plan supports mobility hubs in McDonough and Stockbridge. Planners describe mobility hubs as transfer points between transit modes. Features include covered seating, real-time bus arrival info, restrooms and fare payment kiosks.
The long-term projects start in 2038 carrying through 2050. They include the final project recommendations from the transit plan.
For transit service, the plan suggests one more local bus route as well as one rapid regional connector. The local bus route is Stockbridge to South DeKalb.
The rapid regional connector would offer all-day service to downtown Atlanta. This differs from Xpress bus service only offered during peak hours. The route would connect McDonough and Stockbridge to the state capital.
The long-range plan includes three additional mobility hubs. They are Piedmont Henry, Jonesboro Road and Hampton.
When complete, the transit plan recommends the following:
- Countywide “Dial-a-Ride” expansion
- Six local bus routes
- Five mobility hubs
- One new park & ride lot (Mt. Carmel Road)
- Commuter bus expansion to Hartsfield-Jackson
- One rapid regional connector
If all six local bus routes were implemented, then 30% of county residents will reside within 1/2-mile of fixed route transit. 30% of employment opportunities would also be within 1/2-mile.
More info about the transit plan recommendations is available on the transit plan website.
Featured image shows concept art for a transit bus with new Henry Connect branding. Henry County Transit Plan photo.
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