The I-16/I-75 Interchange improvements project will include significant upgrades on a 4km-long section of the I-75 from Hardeman Avenue to Pierce Avenue and a 4.8km-long section of the I-16 from I-75 to Walnut Creek within the City of Macon in Georgia, US.

The corridor has three interstate/arterial route interchanges at Spring, Second Street, and Coliseum Drive, as well as a freeway-to-freeway interchange between the I-16 and the I-75.

The $500m project is being carried out in seven phases by the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT).

The ground-breaking ceremony of the project was held in June 2017 and phase one is expected to be completed by mid-2018. The overall project is scheduled for completion by 2023.

I-16/I-75 Interchange improvements project details and benefits

The project involves improvements of the interstate highways including the construction of wider shoulders, concrete barriers and additional lanes. A collector/distributor (CD) road system will also be added to both I-16 and I-75.

The interchange improvement project is aimed at improving the safety and efficiency for commuters and commerce/trucks, as well as reducing congestion on the highways. It will provide better access to the people travelling to and from the downtown Macon area.

A proposed upgrade of 11 bridges along the stretch of the project is also being undertaken to reduce crashes.

Phases one and 1b of I-16/I-75 Interchange improvements project

Phase one includes the improvement of an approximately 2.4km-long east-bound section of the I-16 between I-75 and Coliseum Dr. It also involves operational improvements to a west-bound section of the I-16 at the Spring Street interchange and construction of an I-16 east-bound CD road between I-75 and Spring  Street.

Upgrades to the Pleasant Hill neighbourhood on either side of the I-75 highway are being carried out during phase 1b. GDOT will collaborate with the Macon-Bibb Community Enhancement Authority on the relocation and rehabilitation of seven vacant lots and homes, as well as the construction of 17 new residential structures.

A linear park with multi-use trail, lighting and information kiosks will be created along the east side of the I-75 while a new park called the Jefferson Long Park will be created to the west of the I-75.

The phased development also includes the construction of a grass-covered culvert as well as noise and visual walls along the I-75 within Pleasant Hill, replacement of David Lucas pedestrian bridge, and resurfacing and rehabilitation of sidewalk throughout the Pleasant Hill community.

Details of phases two to six of I-16/I-75 interchange improvements

Phase two involves operational improvements to a 1.6km-long northbound section of the I-75 between Hardeman Avenue and the south side of the I-16 Interchange. A new I-16 east-bound ramp will be added parallel to the I-75 northbound mainline.

Phase three includes the construction of a west-to-south collector-distributor (CD) road, a bridge and the first portion of the I-75 southbound to the I-16 eastbound ramp.

Capacity and operational improvements to an I-16 eastbound section between I-75 and Walnut Creek will be carried out in phase four. Other works include widening of Second Street and addition of sidewalks, eastbound entrance and exit ramps.

Phase five will improve a westbound section of the I-16 between I-75 and Walnut Creek. The sixth and final phase will involve capacity improvements to north and westbound sections of I-75 between the I-16 Interchange and Pierce Ave. A 1,600ft-long tunnel will also be built for the Norfolk Southern Railroad, as part of phase six.

Contractors involved

ER Snell is responsible for the construction of phases 1b, two and three of the interchange improvement project, under two separate contracts worth $168m.

GDOT placed a $63m contract to CW Matthews for the phase one construction of the I-16/I-75 interchange improvements project.