Officials: Gwinnett "diverging diamond" opens - CBS46 News

Officials: Gwinnett "diverging diamond" opens

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GWINNETT COUNTY, GA (CBS46) -

A facelift for a major Gwinnett County interchange was completed before the Monday morning rush hour, according to project managers.

The Pleasant Hill Road overpass at Interstate 85 was shut down for construction late Friday night so crews could begin the makeover to a diverging diamond layout. The new traffic flow takes cars into the opposite lanes on the overpass, so drivers can more easily make turns to and from the interstate, while preventing a backup of traffic on the surface street.

Drivers who wish to keep going straight are guided by special lights and lane changes back into the normal lanes.

"The studies have shown this is going to have a major positive impact on traffic in the area," said Joe Allen with the Gwinnett Place Community Improvement District. "To replace this bridge was going to be close to $60 million, and we're doing this for about a tenth the cost."

The first diverging diamond in the Atlanta metro area was completed in the summer of 2012 on Ashford Dunwoody Road at Interstate 285. The Pleasant Hill Road project is the second of three total projects planned for the Atlanta area.

The next one is slated for Jimmy Carter Boulevard at Interstate 85.

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