Local News

November 25, 2012

GDOT could start work on Rocky Face interchange in spring

Pauline Brown has run the Mr. Biscuit on the North Dalton Bypass for the past 34 years. But she says she’s worried about how much longer she can continue.

“We offer good food at a reasonable price, but if people can’t turn in here it’s going to put us out of business,” she said.

Brown and other business owners in the area are worried about plans for the Rocky Face interchange, including a new median down the bypass. Business owners on the north side of the bypass say that the median will make it difficult for customers to get to their businesses.

“During the busy times of the day, rush hour, the traffic backs up so far anyway it’s hard to get in and out. I’m not sure it will make a huge difference, at least during the busy times, but it does concern me that they didn’t provide a place to turn around,” said Tom Manis, the owner of the Blimpie on the North Bypass.

Officials with the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) say the median will stretch from the Shugart Road intersection almost to the first bridge going south, meaning that southbound traffic would have to go to Willowdale Road to turn around to get to businesses such as Mr. Biscuit. Business owners say they asked for some breaks in the median so that traffic could turn but were denied.

The median will be part of an overall reconstruction of the I-75 interchange at Rocky Face and some of the surrounding roads to improve safety and move traffic more swiftly. The project has been on the books for almost two decades and at the top of the Greater Dalton Metropolitan Planning Organization’s list of priorities for more than a decade, but GDOT announced only earlier this year that it would be put out for bids in January.

GDOT Project Manager Peter Emmanuel says work on the project could start by spring 2013.

“The department has estimated that the construction could take two years. I would say that anything less than 30 months would be a good, realistic time,” he said. “The median would be part of that overall work, which include U.S. Highway 41.”

The plans call for longer deceleration lanes on both the northbound and southbound paths of I-75. That will allow vehicles exiting at Highway 41 to separate from through traffic earlier and, in theory at least, slow down more before hitting the exit ramps.

The plan also calls for a new, second, exit ramp on the southbound side of I-75, allowing traffic headed north and west of Highway 41 to separate earlier from traffic headed south and east, as well as some changes to bridges in the area to help them handle more traffic.

In addition, Tampico Way’s intersection with Shugart Road will be moved about 400 feet south. Now, that intersection is just a few feet south of the intersection of Shugart and Highway 41.

Emmanuel says the total cost of the project, including engineering and right-of-way acquisition, will be roughly $56.7 million.


Text Only
Local News
  • runner thompson.jpg Taking the race back

    Dean Thompson didn’t go 100 yards in his 26.2 miles through the streets of Boston without seeing people on the side of the road cheering for him.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bobby Lee Dixon mg.jpg Officials: Man jailed for driving toward officer

    A Chatsworth man who officials said accelerated a vehicle toward a law enforcement officer who was approaching on foot remains in the Murray County jail without bond.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Standoff 1 mlh.jpg Charges undetermined following standoff (Updated 5:45 p.m.)

    Police have yet to decide whether to press criminal charges against a man they say was armed and intoxicated while barricading himself in his office at a carpet mill in downtown Dalton Tuesday evening.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Man charged for using fraudulent Social Security card

    A man is being held in the Whitfield County Jail on multiple charges for using a fraudulent Social Security card with someone else’s Social Security number to land a job at a rug manufacturer in Dalton and for providing false information to receive workers’ compensation benefits, according to the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation’s Enforcement Division.

    April 23, 2014

  • Standoff 1 mlh.jpg Police: Four-hour standoff ends with peaceful surrender

    A man who was armed with at least one firearm and believed to be under the influence of alcohol surrendered to police Tuesday night after barricading himself for four hours inside a carpet mill in downtown Dalton, officials said.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Murray deputy bit by drug dog while taking selfie

    A Murray County Sheriff’s Office deputy is recovering after one of the department’s drug dogs bit him in the face on Monday.

    April 23, 2014

  • Local wrestler ‘made everybody smile’

    Rash Renegade got his wrestling nickname after a motorcycle wreck several years ago left him with a bad case of road burn.

    April 23, 2014

  • Pinwheels in murray '14 1 mlh.jpg Awareness can prevent child abuse

    Three hundred forty-six pinwheels dotted the Murray County Courthouse lawn on Tuesday, representing 346 reported cases of child abuse in the county last year.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Murray library, regional system still far apart

    Murray County officials say they will announce soon if they will follow through with their plan to take the Chatsworth-Murray Library out of the Northwest Georgia Regional Library System.

    April 22, 2014

  • Fire believed to have started outside home

    Investigators are still working to learn what sparked a fire that nearly destroyed a house at 602 Top St. in Dalton on Monday.

    April 22, 2014

AP Video