The Ashford Dunwoody Diverging Diamond Interchange (DDI), the first of its kind in Georgia, has received three awards from state transportation organizations for the innovative project to improve traffic congestion at the I-285 and Ashford Dunwoody Road Interchange.
The Georgia Partnership for Transportation Quality has awarded the Best Innovative Solution Award and the Grand Design Award to the Perimeter Community Improvement Districts (PCIDs), which initiated the project; Moreland Altobelli Associates, Inc., which handled the engineering and design and the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) Office of Innovative Program Delivery, which funded and oversaw construction.
The innovative solution award recognizes innovation and emphasizes new design solutions to engineering problems with broad prospects for future application, according to the design competition guidelines. The grand award is made for one outstanding project that is judged especially worthy. The awards were presented at the American Council of Engineering Companies of Georgia recent annual Georgia Transportation Summit.
The Ashford Dunwoody DDI also has received the 2012 Innovation in Transportation Award from the Institute of Transportation Engineers Georgia Section. The ITE award was presented to both the PCIDs and GDOT at ITE’s recent annual meeting and awards ceremony.
“We are proud now to be able to refer to the Ashford Dunwoody DDI as an award-winning project,” said PCIDs President and CEO Yvonne Williams.
The DDI is an innovative design that shifts the flow of traffic to the opposite side of the road to reduce points of traffic conflict and improve traffic flow and safety.
“Each of our partners played an important role in delivering this $6 million project,” Williams said. In 2009, the PCIDs hired Moreland Altobelli engineering firm to find an immediate, low-cost way to make improvements to the more than 40-year-old I-285 and Ashford Dunwoody Road Interchange.
“The interchange was inadequate to serve the nearly 55,000 vehicles that use it daily,” said Williams. Gerald Ross, who recently retired as chief engineer of GDOT, suggested the DDI to Moreland Altobelli, Williams noted. After researching the cutting-edge DDI design, which originated in France and had first been used in the U.S. in 2009 in Springfield, Mo., Moreland Altobelli recommended the DDI to the PCIDs.
The PCIDs received grant funding from the State Road and Tollway Authority and DeKalb County for engineering and design and GDOT funded the $4.6 million cost of construction.
“Police reports and commuter feedback indicate that congestion and accidents have significantly improved at this major gateway to the Perimeter Market,” said Williams. “We’ll have the hard data after traffic studies are completed in the spring.”