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UPDATED: Brookhaven response to I-85 bridge collapse

Post Date:03/30/2017 10:50 PM


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City and State Officials Urge Motorists to Consider Travel Alternatives

Increasing Congestion and Travel Times Expected Next Week; Individuals and Businesses Should Do Their Part to Minimize Rush Hour Congestion

ATLANTA – In the eight days since the I-85 bridge fire, Georgia motorists have taken advantage of a variety of commute options, helping to reduce congestion.

With the end of spring break, traffic volume in the Atlanta metro area is expected to increase by as much as 20 percent beginning Monday, April 10. Because of this, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed are joining the Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) in urging both individuals and businesses to explore ways they can work differently.

“Georgia is an international business center, home to Fortune 500 companies and some of the most innovative and forward-thinking organizations in the world,” said Gov. Deal. “The challenge posed by the closure of I-85 is one we can overcome if we all plan ahead and take advantage of the options available.”

According to Georgia DOT, the expected increase in traffic volume next week has the potential to increase average travel times by at least 30 percent throughout metro Atlanta, drastically lowering the average speed on area roads due to increased congestion.

Georgia DOT Commissioner Russell McMurry advised employers that allowing telecommuting is the best way to keep cars off of the roads. He also encouraged businesses to consider allowing employees to alter their work schedules to avoid travel during the most congested times of day, 5-10 a.m. and 2:30-7 p.m.

“Both telecommuting and staggered work schedules help remove single-occupant vehicles from roadways during peak times, which contributes to our goal of reducing congestion as much as possible,” said McMurry. “If we all work together, we can all get where we need to go in a relatively reasonable time frame.”

Public transit like MARTA or GRTA Express Bus Service are easy and efficient options to reach and travel through the metro Atlanta area. The I-85 corridor has frequent and reliable train service via MARTA’s rapid rail network and 38 stations around the metro area, directly serving major business centers north and south of the I-85 reconstruction.

“We need to remember how we handled the Centennial Olympic Games – the closest comparison we have to what we’re facing over the next several weeks,” said Mayor Reed. “During those two weeks, every employer, community and individual adjusted their behaviors. We should take the same approach in response to the Interstate 85 collapse, by taking advantage of telecommuting, MARTA, and ride-share options like Uber, uberPOOL and Lyft. Atlantans know how to persevere. We can pull together, help each other through the next several weeks, and demonstrate to the world that Atlanta is resilient, nimble, and undeterred.”

Georgia DOT is offering resources to help motorists plan their commutes:

  • Visit for the most up-to-date maps and information on road closures and alternate routes

  • Visit or dial 511 for routing information or to speak to an operator who can assist

  • Visit Georgia Commute Options for additional resources and information about available cash incentives for using commuting options

  • Visit for MARTA routes and schedules

  • Visit for information on GRTA express routes

The Atlanta Regional Commission is providing alternate route options to commercial vehicles and large trucks to help them get through the region. These types of vehicles are also encouraged to only travel through the metro area during overnight hours and take advantage of I-285 to bypass the city.

“Georgia DOT is working in concert with many state and metro Atlanta transportation agencies and civic organizations to respond to the travel needs of Georgia’s businesses and commuters,” said McMurry. “We will continue monitoring conditions and providing information to assist the traveling public and keep Georgia moving.” 

Georgia DOT’s goal is to ensure replacement of the I-85 Bridge as quickly as possible. The Department has committed to a delivery date of June 15 to reopen this critical section of infrastructure to traffic.

The Georgia Department of Transportation is committed to providing a safe, seamless and sustainable transportation system that supports Georgia’s economy and is sensitive to both its citizens and its environment. For more information on Georgia DOT, please visit You also may follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter (


Brookhaven coordinating with GDOT, addressing traffic issues


Brookhaven, GA, Mar. 31, 2017 – Extra City of Brookhaven police officers were on duty overnight to address the traffic issues caused by the interstate collapse in Atlanta.

After the collapse and interstate closure, Brookhaven Police established a command post to coordinate increased through traffic in Brookhaven.  As conditions improved, the command post was deactivated at 9:45 p.m. 

As it pertains to through traffic in the City of Brookhaven, the Regional Traffic Operations Program is implementing longer throughput traffic signal cycles on Buford Highway and Peachtree Road.  Both roads are state routes.  This may cause delays in Brookhaven neighborhoods that directly access these roads.

Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst, City Manager Christian Sigman and Brookhaven officials remain in contact with the State of Georgia, DeKalb County and neighboring cities as needed as information develops regarding traffic plans.  The Georgia Department of Transportation released the following chart outlining the basic detours at present.

“People should minimize their commutes today and take MARTA if possible,” said Mayor Ernst. “Brookhaven remains open for business as we continue our local response to the regional impact of this disaster.”

Brookhaven addressing traffic issues and planning for morning commute issues

Brookhaven, GA, Mar. 30, 2017 - The City of Brookhaven Police Department and key administrative staff have been working throughout the evening to address the traffic ramifications caused by the interstate collapse in Atlanta.

Brookhaven Police established a command post to coordinate traffic issues in Brookhaven.  As conditions improved, the command post was deactivated at 9:45 p.m.  Officers resumed regular details and will monitor the traffic conditions throughout the evening.

Brookhaven Police Chief Gary Yandura is in communications with the Atlanta command center, the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) and the police departments of adjacent cities.  Chief Yandura is relaying information as it becomes available to Major Brandon Gurley and City Manager Christian Sigman.  At this point, Brookhaven and all other local municipalities are waiting on GDOT to develop detour routes around the area of the interstate collapse.  Once those routes have been identified and announced, Brookhaven Police will have the information to develop a Brookhaven traffic plan for the morning commute.

"Even though the disaster occurred outside of Brookhaven it affects us all, regardless of municipal borders," said City Manager Christian Sigman. "It's all hands on deck for now, and we have availed our resources to assist as needed."

"Right now, everyone should avoid the area if possible, ride MARTA if possible, use 511 for the latest updates and definitely allow a lot of extra time and patience for the morning commute," said Sigman.


Media Contacts:
Burke Brennan
Director of Communications

Ann Marie Quill
Communications Manager
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