GA DOT Summer Highway Construction Season

| July 2, 2014

GDOT-LogoATLANTA, GA – It’s summertime and the Georgia Department of Transportation is advising motorists they should plan ahead to avoid overheated radiators (and tempers) – especially those who anticipate weekend travel on Interstate 20 between Villa Rica and Covington or I-285 on the west side of metropolitan Atlanta.

Southwest Georgia travelers will fare better with only one interstate interchange project scheduled. The exit and entrance ramps of the I-75 interchange at Brighton Road (Exit 66) will be reconfigured and a new, wider overpass will be built. The width of the shoulders of the interstate underneath the bridge will also be widened. The interchange will be temporarily closed during construction and detours will be announced in advance. Elsewhere in the area, detours remain in place on two existing projects in Lowndes and Seminole counties and road widening projects in Colquitt and Tift counties may cause occasional delays, but no major road closures are planned.

“We apologize for the inconveniences that will occur,” says Georgia DOT State Construction Engineer Marc Mastronardi, “but these preventative activities we undertake in summer months will save taxpayers millions of dollars over the long term in avoided major reconstruction costs.

“We really implore everyone – Georgians, out-of-state truckers and motorists simply passing through – to plan ahead by utilizing our free-call 511 phone system and the 511 website: www.511ga.org. You’ll get real-time road conditions and your forethought and planning likely will save you hours. I can’t over-emphasize the importance of planning ahead for your weekend travel this summer, especially on I-20 and metro Atlanta’s west side. We realize summer weekends may seem to some like a bad time for us to undertake this work. But we have to take advantage of the warm summer days and nights and weekday traffic is much, much heavier.”

The work on Atlanta’s west side involves replacing and repairing 17 miles of I-285 concrete slabs that will require multiple lane closures throughout weekends. To Atlanta’s west, a resurfacing of I-20 between Douglasville and Villa Rica also requires continuous multiple lane closures on weekends as will repairs to 16 I-20 bridges/overpasses from the downtown area to the Chattahoochee River. Significant delays are virtually inevitable.

Travel on I-20 east of metro Atlanta will be no picnic, either. Resurfacing between Conyers and Covington will require periodic multiple lane closures on weekends; bridge reconstruction at the Alcovy River in Newton County will require weekday closures of one of two travel lanes in either direction; and closer to the city, restriping efforts will continue through mid-summer, requiring multiple I-20 lane closures in both directions on weekend nights, although the work will be timed so as not to interfere with traffic to and from Atlanta Braves’ games.

Interstate Highway System travelers can get construction and traffic information at the State’s Welcome Centers which offer free maps and access to real-time information on construction or accident-related delays and lane closures.

As always, motorists this summer are urged to obey speed limits in general and in particular in work zones; avoid distractions and unnecessary lane changes; allow extra distance between themselves and the vehicle ahead in work zones; never drive while impaired; and always exercise caution.

The following are some of the Department’s other potentially “motorist impactful” construction jobs under way or beginning this summer.

South & Southwest Georgia:

  • U.S. 84/State Route 38/West Hill Avenue railroad overpass construction in Valdosta/Lowndes County;
  • Reconfiguration of SR 3/Liberty Expressway interchange with North Jefferson Street in Dougherty County;
  • Widening of U.S. 319/SR 35 in Colquitt and Tift counties;
  • Widening of Carpenter Road in Tift;
  • Resurfacing of U.S. 41/SR 7 in Tift;
  • I-75 at Brighton Road interchange reconstruction in Tift; and
  • Drainage improvements on SR 39 in Seminole County.
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