Today we turn our attention just to the east of the city of Douglasville for an update on a major transportation project with implications for all who live in Douglas County. In 2013 work began on replacing an aging bridge and bringing an interchange in dyer need of attention to modern standards. At the start of this project, the area looked like a wasteland. Bare land and mud, exposed pipes, and traffic light problems plagued the start. At the tail end of 2014, a light at the end of a frustrating tunnel. The western facing span of the new Lee Rd bridge over I-20 opened to traffic almost 8 feet higher than the old 40+ year old span. The new exit ramps opened set to modern Federal standards. The old exit ramps saw numerous accidents at the merge due to outdated distances for merging. As of January 2015, the old span of the bridge is completely gone and work has begun to construct the eastern facing span of the new bridge. But the bridge is only part of the story in rebuilding the interchange and ultimately an overhaul of Lee Rd in Lithia Springs.
The final plans for the entire project call for the widening of Lee Rd at the interchange with 7 lanes across the span. 2 Turn lanes will help traffic going eastbound towards Atlanta, with one heading westbound. A new light and reconfiguration of the Vulcan Dr/Sweetwater Industrial Blvd intersection will be complete with the interchange project. Once the project is finished, some of the retailers and service stations displaced by the construction are expected to come back and open, though no word yet on which ones. Another GDOT project is expected to begin shortly before the current project at the interchange is finished. Lee Rd south of I-20 will be widened to 4 lanes with a median all the way to Fairburn Rd/GA 92. This is expected to begin in late 2015/early 2016. Lee Rd was also supposed to be widened along with S. Sweetwater Rd to US 78, but that project is not currently funded. Project completion date on the interchange project is expected to be later this year, weather permitting. We here at the menu will keep you updated on the remaining progress.