More construction underway on I-285 northeast of Atlanta



The Georgia Department of Transportation has begun the reconstruction of the I-285 interchange at Peachtree Industrial Boulevard.

The $16 million project will combine the I-285 exit ramps to Peachtree Industrial Boulevard north and south and adjust the horizontal curve of the north exit ramp to reduce a bottleneck from I-285. The work is expected to be finished in 2023.

The interchange is one of several projects GDOT is pursuing in advance of building toll lanes on the top half of the Perimeter. Other preliminary projects include several new I-285 bridges east of Atlanta and an auxiliary lane extension between Roswell Road and Riverside Drive. Work on those projects also is expected to begin this year.

The timeline for the $6.1 billion toll lanes is up in the air. Last year GDOT decided to seek private investment for the lanes. To recoup its investment, the selected firm would set toll rates and keep the revenue for 50 years.

GDOT says the private investment will allow it to build two new lanes in each direction on the Perimeter east and west of Atlanta. Previously, the state planned to build a single lane in each direction.

Skeptics say allowing a private firm to set tolls could mean higher tolls for motorists.