More nightly road closures scheduled for construction project on deadliest interchange in Georgia

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — The Georgia Department of Transportation is alerting drivers about temporary lane closures as construction continues on 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 began back in May 2023. The latest set of road closures and traffic patterns will start Monday night and happen every night through Friday into Saturday morning.

From 7 p.m. to 6 a.m., one right lane and the right shoulder will be closed from Wesley Chapel Road to Panola Road. There will also be a right lane and right shoulder closure on the westbound side between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. for drivers going from Panola Road to Wesley Chapel.

The following traffic patterns will shift as well from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m.

  • Traffic shift to the right side of the ramp from I-20 eastbound (Exit 67) to I-285 northbound to drive pile for the bridge
  • Traffic pacing operation on I-20 westbound from Wesley Chapel Road to the I-285 Interchange
  • Traffic pacing operation on I-20 eastbound from Wesley Chapel Road to the I-285 Interchange


The interchange is part of a major transit route. Drivers often pick up speed on a long, straight stretch before facing a big hidden curve.

It’s also been called by DeKalb CEO Michael Thurmond the deadliest interchange in Georgia. DeKalb County police says between 2016 and 2021, there was over 3,000 vehicle accidents and 110 fatalities at the intersection.

Construction for the first part of the plan is expected to last until 2026. 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.

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