Work begins on Jefferson Street interchange fix - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Work begins on Jefferson Street interchange fix

ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Work has started on the Jefferson Interchange in Albany. It's the beginning of a two year project. But some residents have concerns about the construction beyond just traffic headaches.

Crews are beginning a more than 2 year project to do away with a dangerous interchange on the Liberty Expressway.

"It's a mess. It wasn't done right the first time and they've finally realized that and are doing something about it," said Fred Abernathy of Fred's Bait and Tackle.

He says removing the entrance and exit ramps at Jefferson and the bypass was much needed. The only problem for him is his bait shop sits in the shadows of the construction zone.

"I don't like the impact it's having on me and the businesses right around here," says Abernathy.

GDOT says the $12.5 million dollar project will relocate the westbound exit and entrance to the bypass across from Philema Road. The intersection will require a new bridge over the railroad tracks and new bridge over North Jefferson. New turn lanes, sidewalks, and a raised median are also planned along Philema.

As the site of many wrecks over the years, few would argue change was needed.

As for Abernathy, he doesn't know if he'll be in business for the next 27 years, but he hopes people remember his bait shop will be running despite the work going on around it.

The Georgia Department of Transportation will answer questions about the Jefferson Street project in a public hearing Tuesday at the city-county government center.

The public hearing begins at 5 p.m.

Copyright 2013 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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