Lane closures set before major construction project begins on deadliest interchange in Georgia

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — The Georgia Department of Transportation is alerting drivers about temporary lane closures connected to one of the biggest road projects in DeKalb County history.

Channel 2′s Sophia Choi first told you about the I-285/I-20 East Interchange Project back in May 2022. The project will revamp the ramps at the interchange and add connecting lanes and auxiliary lanes along I-20 east. It will cost around $685 million.

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Construction on the project is expected to begin in the spring or summer, but the GDOT is closing some lanes for additional soil testing this week before the construction can move forward.

Starting Monday night through Friday, one right lane will be closed on I-20 westbound between Panola Road and Wesley Chapel Road from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.

There will also be a flagging operation on East Wesley Chapel Way from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m.


DeKalb County police says between 2016 and 2021, there was over 3,000 vehicle accidents and 110 fatalities at the intersection.

In May, GDOT Commissioner Russell McMurry said the changes would “reduce freight delays and crashes, and also improve the safety of this entire area.”

Construction for the first part of the plan is expected to last until 2026. DeKalb CEO Thurmond told Channel 2 that the money and efforts will be worth it.

“This is going to be a major step forward in increasing safety, but also increasing mobility and convenience for the tens of thousands of people who travel on this very busy interchange. It’s the most important highway construction project in literally, the history of our county,” Thurmond said.

DeKalb County police says there was over 3,000 vehicle accidents and 110 fatalities between the years of 2016 and 2021 at the intersection.

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