Georgia Department of Transportation Commissioner Russell McMurry said that, with many people using the express lanes, traffic in the regular lanes was moving 10 to 15 mph faster at rush hour. And the peak congestion period in the corridor had been reduced by nearly an hour.
McMurry called the lanes “transformative.” And Tomlinson said they’re “making a difference in the daily lives, the daily commutes of Georgians.”
Tomlinson said the impact will grow in coming years as the state adds new express lanes across the region. Earlier this month the state opened a 10-mile extension of the I-85 express lanes in Gwinnett County.
Next spring GDOT plans to advertise for a contractor to build more express lanes on Ga. 400 in Fulton and Forsyth counties. Eventually, it will build such lanes along the top half of the Perimeter.
The state is more than halfway to its goal of building 120 miles of express lanes across the region.
Tomlinson offered one more tidbit about the Northwest Corridor lanes – his favorite nickname. He said some customers have taken to calling them the “Tollercoaster” – a reference to the way they rise and dip beside the regular lanes on stretches of I-75.
Tomlinson called it “the best nickname ever.”