Work begins Tuesday on Ga. 316, 20 interchange

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Crews will get to work today on a project to transform one of Gwinnett's busiest intersections.

For now, the $37.4 million project to create an interchange at Ga. Highway 316 and Ga. Highway 20 will not require lane closures. But the work could have an impact on traffic to Georgia Gwinnett College even in its early stages.

"There is plenty of work that can be started now," said Georgia Department of Transportation district engineer Todd McDuffie. "Crews will begin installing erosion control systems, work zone signage and clearing vegetation. No lanes will be closed now but shoulders of (Ga.) 316, (Ga.) 20 and Collins Hill Road could be closed as needed. Clearing will begin (Tuesday) morning alongside (Ga.) 316 westbound at (Ga.) 20 and work toward Collins Hill Road."

By the end of 2014, the work by GP's Enterprises of Auburn is expected to continue the grade-separated portion of Ga. 316 through part of Lawrenceville. Collins Hill Road is currently the first signalized intersection on the road on the way to Athens.

"This project will build one interchange or exit to allow traffic from 316 to access 20 or to access Collins Hill Road using a system of long ramps," McDuffie said in a press release. "The existing signalized intersections at State Route 20 and at Collins Hill Road will be removed as the interchange is finished. It is similar to the system we have along (Interstate) 85 from SR 120 down to Pleasant Hill Road. You get off the mainline of I-85 south at SR 120 and use the parallel roads to access the exit you need."