The Georgia Department of Transportation will begin replacing the Northridge Road bridge over Georgia 400 in October, a month before the state removes the tolls from Georgia 400.
Sandy Springs City Hall hosted GDOT officials on Sept. 10 as members of the public showed up to view the latest plans.
The bridge replacement and interchange improvements will cost $9.3 million. The project will take more than two years to finish. Beginning in fall 2014 the bridge will be closed to pedestrian traffic for one year, something that has MARTA officials concerned.
It’s unknown what impact removing the Georgia 400 tolls will have on the traffic along the road, but commuters will have to contend with the bridge replacement that’s being funded with toll money, according to GDOT spokesman Mark McKinnon.
According to GDOT, in October crews will move all northbound and southbound traffic to the south side of the existing bridge during reconstruction of the north side. The crews will expand the shoulder of the road for the additional traffic. The contractor, C.W. Matthews Contracting Company, will remove the north side of the current bridge in late October.
In Stage 2, beginning in fall 2014, all traffic will move to the newly-constructed north side of the bridge.
“During this stage, there will be no pedestrian access across the bridge over (Georgia 400),” a handout from the Sandy Springs meeting warns. “Parents and students of Dunwoody Springs and Davis Academy elementary schools should plan for alternate ways to get to the schools, including car pools.”
MARTA bus officials attended the meeting to discuss the plans with GDOT because many of the pedestrians catch the bus at nearby stops.
Charles and Sharlene Hamby also attended because they drive Georgia 400 to visit their daughter in Johns Creek.
“We don’t think they’re doing anything for the exit southbound on 400,” Charles Hamby said, reviewing the plans.
The plans currently show GDOT intends to add new north and south exit lanes on Georgia 400 and new signage for the northbound exit ramp to Northridge Road. There will also be a new roundabout intended as a safety improvement for Northridge and Somerset Court, the GDOT handout says. Crews also will construct a free flow exit lane from Georgia 400 north bound to Dunwoody Place.
The project’s projected end date is September 2015.