Redesign?Used for First Time in Ga.

Fri October 28, 2011 - Southeast Edition

ATLANTA (AP) A $4.6 million redesign planned for a busy DeKalb County interchange could become a model for congested roads around Georgia.

State Department of Transportation officials have launched a project to improve safety and traffic flow at the Interstate 285 interchange at Ashford Dunwoody Road.

The new “diverging diamond interchange” originated in France. It switches traffic from the traditional U.S. model — with driver-side right lanes on the bridge — to driver-side left lanes. It’s only the seventh time the model has been used in the United States and the first time in Georgia.

DOT Commissioner Vance Smith said he believes motorists will embrace the style once they become accustomed to it.

The project was one of 18 awarded by the state DOT on Aug. 5, totaling more than $34 million.