WEATHER-TRAFFIC UPDATE: Interstates remain slow as commuters, holiday travelers flood roads

Severe Weather Team 2 Meteorologist Brad Nitz has your forecast


Friday: High: 88

Friday night: Low: 72

Saturday: High: 88

» For a detailed forecast, visit The Atlanta Journal-Constitution weather page.

Traffic in Atlanta was already bad before the evening commute started, and people getting off work hasn't helped matters, the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center reported.

Expect metro freeways to continue to get more crowded as Labor Day weekend traffic picks up.

The WSB 24-hour Traffic Center map still has lots of red on most metro interstates. That isn't a good thing.

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The heaviest holiday traffic isn't expected until Friday evening. According to the folks behind the safe driving app Drivemode, Friday between 9 and 10 p.m. will be the worst time to hit the road.

RELATED: These are the worst times to drive in Atlanta during Labor Day weekend

Anytime before Saturday morning is a bad time to drive on Peachtree Street between between Wall Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive — because you can’t.

The road is closed by Atlanta police because of ruptured gas and water lines, which won’t be fixed until Saturday morning at the earliest, police said.

MORE: Gas, water line break shuts down part of Peachtree Street

More crowding is expected in Cobb County around SunTrust Park when the Braves take on the Pittsburgh Pirates. First pitch is scheduled for 7:35 p.m.

RELATED: 6 Intown Atlanta things to do during the Labor Day weekend

It’s looking like a fairly dry Labor Day weekend for North Georgia, which is good news for the hundreds of thousands of people expected to flood metro Atlanta for a variety of celebrations, gatherings and games.

RELATED: Big crowds, extra security ready as Labor Day weekend kicks off

However, Labor Day itself should be the wettest of the three days with a 30 percent chance of rain and storms, according to Channel 2 Action News.

“It’s not widespread, and it’s not a washout,” Channel 2 meteorologist Karen Minton said. “Not every county or every town will have rain today, certainly not all at one time.”

Showers are expected to be isolated to scattered Friday, but Minton said they could be heavy where they pop up. Rainmaking humidity remains high across North Georgia.

“With the heat of the day, can’t rule it out,” she said. “There’s plenty of moisture to work with, just not any unstable air with us at this point.”

A ridge of high pressure off the East Coast is strengthening and is expected to move further inland over the next couple of days, Minton said. It should help usher in drier air.

“Most of us will be influenced by that ridge,” she said. “It cuts down on rain chances. Although certainly not down to zero, still very low.”

Temperatures are expected to hit the upper 80s each day this weekend.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

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Credit: Channel 2 Action News

While rain isn’t likely to play a big role in your Labor Day plans, heavy traffic will take center stage. Atlanta police are expecting crowds of 700,000 in the city alone.

As many as 300,000 are expected to hit Atlanta streets both Saturday and Sunday as part of a variety of celebrations, gatherings and games. By Monday, as many as 700,000 will have visited, making it the busiest holiday weekend of the year for the Atlanta Police Department. JOHN SPINK / JSPINK@AJC.COM

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That doesn’t include the large crowds expected at festivals and sporting events all around metro Atlanta.

RELATED: Atlanta police expect crowds of at least 700K people over Labor Day weekend

MORE: Here's a guide to five busy days in Georgia sports

Dragon Con kicked off downtown Thursday, the Decatur Book Festival began Friday and the Pure Heat Community Festival is scheduled for Saturday in Piedmont Park to celebrate Black Pride.

Georgia Tech’s season opener against Alcorn State, the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game between Auburn and Washington as well as LudaDay Weekend — created by rapper-turned-humanitarian Ludacris — are among other events scheduled for Labor Day weekend.


MARTA officials said the transit agency will enhance service from Saturday through Monday to accommodate the crowds. Weekend rail and bus service will be provided all three days, adding extra trains and buses as needed. Both the Red and Gold lines will run to Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport until the end of service, officials said.

To eliminate lines at the fare machines, MARTA will sell tickets Friday at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel, one of the sites for Dragon Con, until 8 p.m.

» For updated traffic information, listen to News 95.5 and AM 750 WSB and follow @ajcwsbtraffic on Twitter.

» Download The Atlanta Journal-Constitution app for weather alerts on-the-go.