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New Turbine Ramp Marks First in Peach State

Thu April 13, 2023 - Southeast Edition #8
GDOT


The new ramp replaces the existing cloverleaf, loop ramp on the west side of I-95 with a first-of-its kind for Georgia “partial turbine” configuration ramp to provide smoother, more direct connections through this busy corridor.
(GDOT photo)
The new ramp replaces the existing cloverleaf, loop ramp on the west side of I-95 with a first-of-its kind for Georgia “partial turbine” configuration ramp to provide smoother, more direct connections through this busy corridor. (GDOT photo)
The new ramp replaces the existing cloverleaf, loop ramp on the west side of I-95 with a first-of-its kind for Georgia “partial turbine” configuration ramp to provide smoother, more direct connections through this busy corridor.
(GDOT photo) A full-turbine interchange, also known as a whirlpool interchange, has two or three levels with ramps forming a spiral around the interchange’s center. Two of the four existing cloverleafs will convert into turbine bridges at this major interchange thus the “partial-turbine” name.
(GDOT photo) GDOT expects the newest turbine bridge ramp to open later this year. That ramp will carry I-95 southbound traffic to I-16 eastbound.
(GDOT photo) Savannah Mobility Contractors (SMC), a joint venture of Dragados USA and Prince Contracting LLC, was awarded the project in 2018.
(GDOT photo) Other work to be completed at the I-16/I-95 Interchange includes improvements to the remaining loop ramps as well as the addition of a new bridge, barrier-separated, collector-distributor (CD) lane, also known as a connecting lane, and improved lighting throughout the interchange.
(GDOT photo)

The Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) opened the first new turbine bridge ramp that will carry I-16 westbound traffic to I-95 southbound, on March 23, 2023. The ramp replaces the existing cloverleaf, loop ramp on the west side of I-95 with a first-of-its kind for Georgia "partial turbine" configuration ramp to provide smoother, more direct connections through this busy corridor.

Savannah Mobility Contractors (SMC), a joint venture of Dragados USA and Prince Contracting LLC, was awarded the project in 2018.

"The opening of the new turbine bridge ramps is a significant milestone for the traveling public as well as the project team and we're eager to get the new configuration opened and allow motorists to see the benefits of the new bridges," said Ron Nelson, Georgia DOT project manager of the 16@95 Improvement Projects. "We're grateful for the opportunity to bring these improvements to the interchange and look forward to sharing other elements of the project as they're completed."

A full-turbine interchange, also known as a whirlpool interchange, has two or three levels with ramps forming a spiral around the interchange's center. Two of the four existing cloverleafs will convert into turbine bridges at this major interchange, thus the "partial-turbine" name.

The second new turbine bridge ramp, which will carry I-95 southbound traffic to I-16 eastbound, is anticipated to open in Q2 2023.

"It's an innovative solution that provides a more direct connection," said Kyle Collins of GDOT communications. "So this is about a 1,900-foot-long bridge, it's going to replace the old cloverleaf ramp that people were used to having to make sort of a quick decision to dart in and out. So, it's going to be a lot smoother transition to get you to either 95 southbound or 95 northbound."

"We talk a lot about the tremendous growth at the Georgia Ports and of course, this project is part of the needed roadway improvements to support the movement of freight and increased safety for both commercial and passenger vehicles," said Georgia DOT Commissioner Russell McMurry. "Through partnerships with local officials, the Georgia Ports Authority and cooperation from the traveling public, we're working to improve this critical interchange and mobility for the Savannah area."

The partial turbine bridge ramps were open overnight when traffic volumes are typically lowest. At the time of the new turbine bridge ramp opening, new signage was unveiled and traffic control measures were installed to close the current cloverleaf, loop ramp.

Other work to be completed at the I-16/I-95 Interchange includes improvements to the remaining loop ramps as well as the addition of a new bridge, barrier-separated, collector-distributor (CD) lane, also known as a connecting lane, and improved lighting throughout the interchange.

This long-term improvement project broke ground in 2020.

Project Information

Construction began in January 2020.

Overall, the project will:

  • Widen I-16 mainline corridor toward the inside median from two to three lanes in each direction from I-95 to I-516;
  • Replace the existing (I-95 southbound to I-16 eastbound and the I-16 westbound to I-95 southbound) loop ramps located on the west side of I-95 with "partial turbine" configuration ramps to provide smoother, more direct connections;
  • Add a collector-distributor (CD) lane on I-95 northbound to help improve traffic flow and safety to and from I-16 and I-95;
  • Add lighting at the I-16/I-95 Interchange;
  • Install Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) technology, including cameras, and changeable message signs to provide real-time driving conditions;
  • Install ramp meters at SR 307/Dean Forest Road and Chatham Parkway on-ramps;
  • Construct a two-lane, emergency-use median crossover on I-16 between I-95 and SR 307/Dean Forest Road to aid in evacuations; existing I-16 crossovers will remain operational until the new, two-lane crossover becomes operational;
  • Construct/rehabilitate 13 bridges throughout the project limits.
About MMIP

The Major Mobility Investment Program (MMIP) is a grouping of large-scale projects expected to yield a significant reduction in congestion along key freight and passenger corridors. The projects will create additional capacity, improve the movement of freight, provide operational improvements and efficiencies, enhance safety, and decrease travel times.

Additional project information is available at majormobilityga.com/projects/i1695improvements.

About GDOT

Georgia Department of Transportation plans, constructs and maintains Georgia's state and federal highways. It's involved in bridge, waterway, public transit, rail, general aviation, bike and pedestrian programs. And it helps local governments maintain their roads. Georgia DOT and its nearly 4,000 employees are committed to delivering a transportation system focused on innovation, safety, sustainability and mobility. The Department's vision is to boost Georgia's competitiveness through leadership in transportation.

For more information, visit dot.ga.gov.




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