At the Northwest Corridor Project's groundbreaking, a hyperbolic Governor Nathan Deal called 29.7 miles of new reversible lanes in Cobb and Cherokee counties "the most impactful and important project we've done here in decades." The toll lanes will be located along Interstate 75 from Akers Mill Road to Hickory Grove Road and along Interstate 575 from I-75 to Sixes Road. Separated from the main traffic lanes, the two new toll lanes will run south in the morning and north in the evening to aid commuters. To avoid high-speed versions of the sort of horrible near-misses that happen regularly on DeKalb Avenue's reversible lanes, the new system will clear the lanes between direction shifts by closing during non-peak hours and will restrict access to a handful (not enough, according to some Cobb County residents) of special entrances at I-75 at I-285, Terrell Mill Road, Roswell Road, I-575, Big Shanty Road and Hickory Grove Road.
The tolls will work in conjunction with the Peach Pass system and will vary depending upon the traffic conditions and time of day. The project — a public-private partnership between the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) and Northwest Express Roadbuilders — will cost $834 million and is expected to open by 2018. Try not to think about what that much money could do for public transit.
This GDOT video provides more details about the project and how it will affect existing intersections and highways:
· Northwest Corridor Project [website]
· Officials break ground for Northwest Corridor toll lanes [11Alive]
· New reversible lanes will help 75/575 corridor [Marietta Daily Journal]
[All images via GDOT.]