In 2010, the Buckhead Community Improvement District (BCID) supported the continuation of tolling on GA 400 to fund a new interchange at I-85 and GA 400. Lesser known to the public is the creation of a dedicated merge lane for GA 400 travelers heading south onto I-85, which is about to happen. The improvements are expected to ease congestion, not only on GA 400 and I-85 southbound, but also on Sidney Marcus Boulevard, Piedmont Road and other surface streets.
Work will begin Sunday to restripe one lane of I-85 southbound to produce a dedicated merge lane — a “free on” lane — for traffic on GA 400 southbound at its merge with I-85. The rightmost (outside) lane of I-85 southbound will be restriped from just south of Exit 86 (Peachtree Street) to the GA 400 on-ramp; the I-85 traffic will then have three general purpose lanes on the left. After the restriping, motorists merging onto I-85 from GA 400 southbound will have two dedicated lanes for a much longer distance. The outside GA 400 lane (right exit lane) will end at the same location where it ends today and the HOV lane will remain. Work will be completed by morning rush hour on Monday, March 14 (weather permitting). Once the project is complete, morning rush hour speeds are projected to increase from 15 mph to 50 mph, alleviating commuter frustration.
BCID understood the impact of the traffic congestion on the Buckhead community and was instrumental in working with community partners, government agencies and the governor’s office to achieve this outcome. We’re pleased that the project is off to a quick start and look forward to the positive impact of its completion. To learn more about the new I-85/GA 400 interchange, click here.