An Elaborate Prank on Atlanta Drivers

From my daytime perch just off and six floors above the connector, I have the delicious option of looking out the window to see what traffic is doing before I leave every day. Most days, I neglect to look because I know I’m headed the other direction (West siiiiide) and away from the chaos. That’s all about to change. There will be no escaping the wrath of the DOT if you’re in the Midtown/Tech area.


GDOT Announces New Construction Schedule for 14th Street Bridge Project

The Georgia Department of Transportation has released an updated project schedule for the replacement of the 14th Street Bridge. The new schedule will allow the department to reduce the amount of time that residents, employees, and visitors will be affected by construction activity.

Current Schedule

· Starting next week (October 1), Williams Street between 10th Street and 16th Street will be reduced to one lane until June 2009. Motorists will be encouraged to bypass Williams Street at 10th Street by using West Peachtree Street.

· In March 2008, Techwood Drive will be closed to traffic between 16th and 10th Streets. The roadway is expected to reopen by September 2009.

· In fall 2008, the 14th Street Bridge will be closed to traffic and will not reopen until summer 2010. Motorists will be detoured to the 17th Street Bridge during this period.

Additionally, in March 2008, DOT crews will begin resurfacing the Downtown Connector between University Avenue and 10th Street. During construction, interstate lane closures will occur at night – Monday through Thursday from 7:00 p.m. until 6:00 a.m. – with continuous closures on weekends starting Friday night and concluding Monday morning.

Take Action Now

This is a tremendously exciting project that will greatly improve safety, access, and mobility while allowing Midtown to sustain its growth and prosperity. The reality is that this project is going to cause major disruptions. However, we can greatly minimize the headaches if we all take an active role in making this work, whether it is individuals changing their commuting habits or employers taking on a greater role in helping their employees embrace transit, carpooling, or teleworking options. We successfully met a similar challenge eleven years ago during the Olympics, and we can do it again.

Midtown Transportation Solutions, a program of the Midtown Alliance, is now working with employers and property managers to develop plans to mitigate the congestion. MTS is also offering a suite of incentives to encourage individuals to try alternatives during this time. If you’d like more information on how you can do your part, please contact

On October 1st, MTS will launch a web site, that will act as a resource center for commuters and employers. This site will provide information on lane closures, detour routes, commute alternatives, and solutions for employers.

In addition, the Midtown Alliance is planning its next quarterly Let’s Talk Midtown for late October. The topic for this program is transportation with a specific focus on the 14th Street Bridge Improvement Project. A detailed invitation is forthcoming. This is a members-only meeting, so if you are not a member but wish to join, please contact

14 Comments so far

  1. bonitis (unregistered) on September 25th, 2007 @ 1:00 pm


  2. bobafred (unregistered) on September 25th, 2007 @ 1:41 pm

    atlanta is dead to me.

  3. Audacity (unregistered) on September 25th, 2007 @ 5:46 pm

    They’re gonna close the 14th Street Bridge for 2 years? Genius.

  4. Chintan (unregistered) on September 26th, 2007 @ 8:03 am

    The most surprising thing about all of this is that this comes as a surprise to anybody. This project had been rumored for years and was the impetus for Nan opening up on Spring and 17th Streets. The master plan was available, and not in a Hitchhiker’s Guide sense, it was on the Midtown Alliance Website for years.

    In the end, the 14th Street Bridge will look like the 5th Street Bridge down by The Globe. And that is teh awesome.

  5. Maigh (unregistered) on September 26th, 2007 @ 8:08 am

    @chintan – To clarify the point, I’m not sure anyone indicated that the construction itself was a surprise – we’ve all been watching it in bits and pieces so yes, we knew it was coming.

    What many of us may not have known until recently was exactly how long the fuckitude would last and what the waves of said fuckitude would look like.

  6. bobafred (unregistered) on September 26th, 2007 @ 9:30 am

    i can’t wait for the bridge to look awesome. that’s totally worth 2 years of closures and traffic nightmares.

  7. Gary McFall (unregistered) on September 26th, 2007 @ 9:50 am

    This is insane. There is no reason that we should allow the construction to take this long. How can we build sky scraper after sky scraper in less than a year but a new Bridge takes two years. It is nuts. With the impact this will have it should built much faster.

  8. Chintan (unregistered) on September 26th, 2007 @ 10:56 am

    “This is insane. There is no reason that we should allow the construction to take this long. How can we build sky scraper after sky scraper in less than a year but a new Bridge takes two years. It is nuts. With the impact this will have it should built much faster.”

    I don’t know. It’s taking about two years for the 1010 Peachtree building next to my office to go up. It took nearly 7 years to open Atlantic Station.

    Here, the contractors are contending with a number of issues, including things like the downtown connector, which goes underneath the bridge, building detour routes, etc. that aren’t necessary in building skyscrapers or outdoor malls.

    I have no idea if 2 years is too long. I’m not an expert in road construction. But it seems like a complicated project, the results look pretty good to me and the current situation is untenable. Moreover, there are alternate routes out there (17th Street, 10th street). I work on the east side of the connector and live in Va-Hi/Druid Hills.

    But continue the whining, I’m sure it’ll help.

  9. Maigh (unregistered) on September 26th, 2007 @ 12:40 pm

    The bridge const. in addition to this nonsense (see link) makes me wonder where the hell the city planning commission is – traveling about with the Mayor?

    Someone is asleep at the wheel.

  10. Chintan (unregistered) on September 26th, 2007 @ 6:48 pm

    “The bridge const. in addition to this nonsense (see link) makes me wonder where the hell the city planning commission is – traveling about with the Mayor?

    Someone is asleep at the wheel.”

    Agreed, that’s a lot of space coming online in the next 5-7 years. And it does beg the question of who’s asleep at the wheel. Some likely answers:

    City Planning Department
    City Council/Mayor

  11. Jay (unregistered) on September 27th, 2007 @ 12:32 am

    As was mentioned, your primary complaint with the 14th St. Bridge project is with GDOT, not the city or the mayor; they have precious little ability to affect what GDOT wants to do with roads.

    As to the ongoing Midtown development, what’s wrong with that?

  12. Maigh (unregistered) on September 27th, 2007 @ 7:24 am

    I disagree on your explaination of who gets to do what, but whatevs. Not worth arguing.

    HOWEVER: “What’s wrong with that?” Seriously? No…I mean it – SERIOUSLY? At the same time as the bridge craziness, we’re talking about putting up well over a dozen high rises (which, I’d like to point out; the numbers are showing there are few buyers for). After what a couple of buildings near 10th and Spring have done to traffic in the area for the last year? Are ya kiddin’ me? Who thought that was a good idea?

    I’ll tell ya. People who live on the moon and eat scissors for breakfast.

  13. Jay (unregistered) on September 27th, 2007 @ 10:59 pm

    First, not all of the high-rises are residential, or not strictly residential; there are a couple of hotels, office space, and a lot of retail, particularly what will be a major component of the Midtown Mile. While there may be fewER buyers than before, there is still substantial in-migration (i.e. growth) in the city of Atlanta proper, much of which is going into Midtown. Also, most of the condo inventory information distributed actually already includes units under construction but without even a sales center operating yet. The Atlanta housing market has held up relatively well compared to a lot of the country. A lot of the people moving Intown are doing so so that they may live, work, and play Intown and thus avoid ever getting on the Connector or using that bridge.

  14. Latinos and Americans for Change (unregistered) on September 28th, 2007 @ 12:48 pm

    Latinos y Americanos
    unidos por el cambio
    ¡Unámonos por el bien de todos!

    ¡Hola amigos! Necesitamos cambiar la situación que viven hoy los inmigrantes en los Estados Unidos.
    Los latinos y los americanos tenemos cosas en común que nos unen, y éstas son más fuertes y positivas que las pequeñas diferencias que tenemos.
    El ejemplo más destacado es el gran aporte que los trabajadores latinos hacen a la economía de este país y este aporte nos beneficia a todos, tanto a los americanos como a los latinos.
    Queremos una Reforma Migratoria que nos una más aún.
    Queremos una solución que reconozca tantos años de esfuerzo.
    Queremos que nuestros vecinos y los políticos lo sepan.
    Queremos que nuestra unión se vea.
    Queremos que se respeten los Derechos Humanos.

    ¡Unámonos por el bien de todos!
    Ahora usted tiene que hacer algo, está invitado a participar. Su presencia es muy necesaria e importante.
    Dónde: Frente a la iglesia First Presbysterian Church, 1328 Peachtree Street NE esquina calle 16 (al lado del High Museum de Atlanta, Midtown), y otros sitios.
    Cuándo: 21 de octubre de 2007, a las 10 am (por favor ser puntual y concurrir bien vestido)
    Informes: 404-622-1257 e-mail:

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