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Summer Brings Improvement Projects Along a Pair of Georgia Interstates

Tue June 23, 2020 - Southeast Edition

After a winter and spring like no other in U.S. history, where the coronavirus halted most construction, many state DOTs are now either re-opening their road projects or accelerating their efforts with the arrival of summer.

Georgia has a long list of large and small highway projects now under construction as either new builds or improvements.

Among them are a pair of interstate projects in the northern half of the state: one big job near Atlanta; the other a smaller contract west of Augusta.

  • The perpetually busy traffic in and around Atlanta led the GDOT to contract a major upgrade at the intersection of I-285 and GA State Road 400 on the north side of the city.
  • To the southeast of the capital city, crews also are working on a maintenance project along I-20 that stretches over three counties.
Transform 285/400 Improvement Project

This interstate/Georgia highway construction began in February 2017 with the goal of helping reduce traffic congestion and enhance safety in the area near the I-285/SR 400 interchange in metro Atlanta.

This priority project adds new flyover ramps, new collector-distributor lanes and other facilities to aid east-west travel along I-285 and north-south travel along SR 400. Plans call for improving 4.3 mi. of I-285 from west of Roswell Road to east of Ashford Dunwoody Road; and 6.2 mi. along SR 400 from the Glenridge Connector to Spalding Drive.

Atlanta's North Perimeter Contractors (NPC), a subsidiary of Ferrovial Agroman US Corp, is the project developer/prime contractor.

The improvements also include eastbound and westbound collector-distributor lanes on I-285 and northbound and southbound collector-distributor lanes on SR 400 that will feed into the new interchange. NPC was contracted to construct 32 bridges as part of the project, as well as installing a diverging diamond interchange on Abernathy Road at SR 400 and widening Mount Vernon Highway bridge over SR 400.

The transformed interchange will ease travel for more than 400,000 drivers who access the intersection each day.

The week of June 15 saw the GDOT and NPC pace traffic on I-285 eastbound and westbound and stop traffic on Glenridge Drive for controlled rock blasting. The daily blasting along I-285 eastbound from Roswell Road to Glenridge Drive, a 30-minute event in the early afternoon, is expected to occur for approximately eight weeks. The rock removal is necessary to allow contractors to begin constructing a collector-distributor lane at the site.

Interstate 20 Capital Improvements

Considering that 28,000 vehicles, with 24 percent of them being large trucks, pound the east-west I-20 pavement between Crawfordville and Thomson daily, maintenance breakdowns have and will occur.

To drastically improve driving conditions and prevent damaging water intrusion, Pittman Construction, in Conyers, began a major $20.786 million capital maintenance contract on June 15 that will cover over 53 interstate lane miles in Taliaferro, Warren and McDuffie counties.

The I-20 project parameters run between mile markers 172.5 to 146, both east and westbound, as well as ramp areas.

Construction personnel will work westbound from McDuffie County until reaching the Taliaferro County cut off location. Until further notice, contractors will have 1- to 2-mi. lane closures in various locations for saw cutting and replacing worn-out concrete slabs.

Due to the 24-hour concrete curing time, some lane closures will last overnight and extend into the weekend. Barrels are present on the I-20 work zone, even with no crews present at certain times due to the cure period necessary to ensure a stable and safe travel surface prior to reopening.

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