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Decatur railroad crossings to be overhauled, forcing week-long detours

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Prominent crossings into downtown Decatur will be regraded to make them safer, more accessible

View of downtown Decatur, looking over the crossing.
The McDonough Street crossing is one of two that will be closed in Decatur.
Google Maps

Two prominent railroad crossings, which provide access into downtown Decatur from the south, will be closed in two weeks for complete reconstruction.

Crossings of the CSX rail lines at McDonough and Candler streets will be regraded to make them safer and easier to cross for pedestrians and vehicles alike. According to the City of Decatur, construction will begin on June 19 and take at least a week to complete.

Reconfiguration of the steep crossings is welcome news to those in the community, but the closure of both will require major detours around the sites over the summer.

When complete, the new crossings will include dedicated pedestrian areas, ADA accessibility, and new traffic signals for drivers to safely navigate the intersections on either side of the railroad.

Details for the official detour routes will not be released until next week, though the nearest open crossings are to the west between Atlanta and Adair avenues and to the east at Commerce Drive.

Both detour routes are likely to add at least a few minutes to trips within Decatur, not unlike a similarly small, yet impactful closure planned in Midtown.

For those on foot, the closure shouldn’t be as big of a deal, with a pedestrian underpass near the McDonough Street crossing, across from Agnes Scott College.

Closed crossings and possible detours.
Google Maps

UPDATE: This article was updated to reflect that the crossings will be closed for seven days, rather than seven weeks.