Truck lanes virtual open house planned in November

Georgia DOT’s plans to construct truck-only lanes along I-75 North continue to move forward and the public will receive their first look at the project in November. The project consists of two toll-free barrier-separated lanes for exclusive commercial vehicle use starting at I-475 in Macon and terminating south of state route 155 in McDonough.

Public information open houses have shifted to a virtual format as a result of COVID-19 allowing anyone to participate from the comfort of their home. GDOT has found success holding virtual open houses for other projects so far, with over 7,500 users accessing an event for the state route 400 express lanes.

The commercial vehicle lanes open house is anticipated to launch in mid-November which will include newly released project information, the concept design, and an opportunity to submit public comment. Residents will have several weeks to participate and submit feedback.

Excerpt from truck only lanes concept diagram (Georgia DOT photo)
Excerpt from Project Preliminary Layout (Georgia DOT photo)

The lanes will provide limited access points for tractor-trailers to enter or exit the lanes. The photo above is an excerpt from a preliminary lane diagram of the project provided by Georgia DOT. The future truck only lanes (shown in orange) are planned to be built along the outside median for much of the project, except for inside the city of Forsyth where the lanes will shift to the center median.

Access points from the general purpose lanes to commercial vehicle lanes are depicted with a blue arrow. Access from the truck lanes to the general lanes is depicted with an orange arrow. It is noteworthy that the preliminary lane diagram, though subject to change, depicts an auxiliary lane from the end of the truck only lanes to the state route 155 / exit 216 interchange. Auxiliary lanes allow additional time for vehicle merging before terminating into an exit only lane.

Not depicted on the lane diagram is the possible Bethlehem Road interchange between McDonough and Locust Grove. Georgia DOT committed $1 million dollars in late 2019 to assist the city of Locust Grove in scoping activities for the project.

The current schedule for the estimated $1.6 billion dollar truck lanes project forecasts construction to start in 2024 with substantial completion in 2028. The project includes work on twenty-seven bridges, replacements or widening.

The featured image is a rendering of the future truck only lanes from Georgia DOT.