Ga. 400 commuters will get some relief in the coming months. By the end of January, the corridor’s northbound side will be widened near McFarland Road.
The project will begin where the highway narrows from four to two lanes before McFarland, or Exit 12.
Instead of shedding two lanes, a third lane will extend north to the bridge over the Big Creek Greenway.
“It’s really just a matter of changing the shoulders and the drainage structures to get us three lanes up to that point,” said Teri Pope, state Department of Transportation spokeswoman. “We’re trying to get some congestion relief to that area.”
The work is part of a group of multiple projects, totaling $18.8 million, being funded through the department. Projects include roads in Dawson, Hall and Madison counties.
Improvements also will be made to Ga. 400’s Abernathy Road exit in Fulton County.
Combined, the two Ga. 400 projects will cost about $3.38 million. C.W. Matthews Contracting will handle the work.
Creating a third lane won’t impede on a proposed future project to widen Ga. 400 to four lanes from McFarland to Hwy. 20.
“It’s too expensive to throw away work … so it will all work together. This will be part of the design of any future widening of Ga. 400,” Pope said. “This is a baby step. Any additional capacity that we can get on Ga. 400, especially quickly, is needed. And this project will help.
“We wish we could do more, but with the constraints we’re under, we’re thankful to get this complete.”