Tell us: Are metro Atlanta express lanes making traffic better?

The I-75 South Metro Express Lanes in Clayton and Henry counties are just some of the new lanes coming to metro Atlanta over the next decade or more. JOHN SPINK /JSPINK@AJC.COM

As The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has reported, Georgia is trying to address some of the world’s worst traffic by building a system of new express lanes across metro Atlanta.

They’re already open on parts of I-85 in Gwinnett County and I-75 in Clayton and Henry counties. They’re rising along I-75 and I-575 in Cobb and Cherokee counties. An extension is under construction on I-85. Over the next decade or more, new express lanes will come to Ga. 400, the northern arc of the Perimeter and further up I-85.

They’re open to anyone willing to pay an adjustable toll – the heavier the traffic, the higher the toll. The idea is to keep traffic in the express lanes moving at 45 m.p.h. or more (by raising the toll and discouraging some people from using them as traffic gets worse).

State officials say the express lanes make commuting more predictable for those who use them. They say other motorists also benefit – as more people take the express lanes, it frees up space in the regular lanes.

That’s the theory. But we want your thoughts on how the express lanes work in practice. Do you use the existing express lanes on I-85 or I-75? Why or why not? Have they helped or hindered your commute? Are you able to cruise along at 45 m.p.h. in those lanes, as promised?

If you’re willing to share your story for an upcoming article, please contact me at dwickert@ajc.com.

Reader Comments 0

4 comments
FurryFella
FurryFella

Having lived here for 20+ years, one would think this problem of traffic would've been solved by now.  Atlanta public schools actually has the best solution - we get a minimum fine of $300 for passing a school bus.  And each bus has camera's installed on it.  It would be better to just install camera's in the HOV lanes and fine people $300 & up for abuses, litter, and everything else.  Then some of this money could be used to extend MARTA heavy rail and the street car to under-served neighborhoods.

Jackalope
Jackalope

Ever notice how the "solution" is always to get more money from the poor jerks stuck in traffic?


Atlantarama
Atlantarama

I think the HOV lanes close to town create more aggravation than they're worth. During rush hour, I'd estimate nearly half the cars (and even worse, the SUV's) using HOV on I-85 hold only one person. This makes me feel like a fool for staying in the regular lanes. Either crack down on the abuses, or just make it a passing lane only for all except buses and public transport.

DrSocrates
DrSocrates

Yes.  The I85 HOT lanes--if people would obey the law and not use them for passing lanes--are effective.  And that's just it.  People in Atlanta do not obey the traffic laws.  They cross the double lines without fear of punishment.  Even the d--ned police cars park on the narrow HOT shoulder (which partially blocks the lane) in order to use their radar guns.  Bottom Line:  If police cars would stop parking in the HOT lane and drivers would stop using the HOT lane for passing, we would have an effective, properly functioning system that could finance future road improvements for ALL of Georgia.