This rendering shows a representation of what the PATH 400 Trail extension might look like when completed. (Sandy Springs)

Sandy Springs asked for $12.3 million in federal funds for the PATH 400 Trail Extension project, but Congress approved $750,000 in Community Project Funding.

The Sandy Springs City Council approved an agreement with U.S. Housing and Urban Development for the grant funding during its Aug. 15 meeting.

The project will construct a 1.8-mile multi-use trail that will extend the existing PATH 400 trail from Buckhead to the Perimeter District and Medical District, Public Works Director Marty Martin said.

The city has $19 million in funds for land and construction costs, Martin told the city council, but he said the project has an estimated $18 million deficit in construction funds. Inflation and construction cost increases have caused the deficit, he said. The city plans to construct the project in phases as funds become available.

Martin said the city must perform an environmental review with the federal funds to satisfy HUD’s National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requirements.

“We think given the rigor of the NEPA review we’ve already conducted for the Federal Highway Administration we’ll easily satisfy that,” Martin said.

No local match is required for the grant, he said.

Most of the funding so far has come from Federal Highway Administration Funds through the Atlanta Regional Commission, Martin said. The city has provided approximately $4 million in a local match using TSPLOST funding.

The phased approach his department plans to take as it moves ahead on the project will be presented to City Council later this year. The city asked Rep. Lucy McBath to submit its funding request to the U.S. House Appropriations Committee in April 2022, which she did. Congress in the Consolidated Appropriations Act for 2023 approved only $750,000 of what Sandy Springs requested.

Bob Pepalis covers Sandy Springs for Rough Draft Atlanta and Reporter Newspapers.