New pedestrian-friendly improvements will be coming to the North Point area in the city of Alpharetta, according to a news release from the city June 16.

The Atlanta Regional Commission awarded the city with a $1.6 million grant to design pedestrian corridor enhancements along North Point Parkway between Mansell and Haynes Bridge roads, including smart technologies, wide sidewalks, bicycle side paths, low-impact stormwater management strategies, pedestrian lighting and landscape enhancements. The city of Alpharetta will provide an additional $400,000 in matching funds, the release said.

The ARC awarded the funds through the Surface Transportation Block Grant Program, which is a federally funded program that assists regions and local governments in improving transportation.

"The primary focus of the North Point Parkway Pedestrian Corridor Enhancements Project is improving and providing infrastructure that encourages alternative modes of transportation such as walking, bicycling, and use of the existing public transit system," the release said. "The overarching goal is to reduce traffic congestion while improving mobility within the North Point Retail and Employment District, an 898-acre area of Alpharetta centered around North Point Mall."

The project is also part of the city's larger North Point Activity Center Livable Centers Initiative, which is also done in partnership with the ARC. The LCI is a grant program that incentivizes local jurisdictions to re-envision their communities as vibrant, walkable places that offer increased mobility options, encourage healthy lifestyles, and provide improved access to jobs and services, according to the release.

"Our North Point LCI envisions a walkable, mixed-use eco district centered on pedestrian trails and greenspace; a significant change from the car-centric environment that exists today," said Kathi Cook, Alpharetta’s director of community development, in the release. "This vision relies heavily on a series of pedestrian and multiuse trail connections that are needed to sustain and enhance the North Point District well into the future, and this grant is a big step forward in making that vision a reality."