Major improvements to the interchange of River Watch Parkway and Interstate 20 are planned to help alleviate traffic congestion.
Adding a left-turn lane for the I-20 eastbound ramp to the one existing turn lane will prevent large trucks from piling up into the through-travel lane, city Traffic Engineer Steve Cassell said. Trucks leaving the Pilot Travel Center truck stop on River Watch often fill the turn lane, creating a problem with traffic flow, he said.
The interchange redesign includes resurfacing and widening about 1.2 miles of River Watch from Riverwest Drive to River Shoals Parkway.
“Everything we’re doing will be within the existing right of way,” Cassell said.
A public meeting is scheduled for 6-8 p.m. Wednesday at Warren Road Community Center. Traffic engineers will be available to answer questions and hear feedback about the design.
The I-20 eastbound and westbound ramps will be widened to accommodate dual turn lanes. A right-turn lane will be added on Claussen Road for traffic entering River Watch Parkway.
The interchange improvements are funded by a $2.5 million allocation from the special 1-cent regional sales tax for transportation projects that won voter approval July 31.
Other River Watch Parkway projects on the sales tax list include traffic signal improvements and resurfacing of the road from downtown Augusta to the Columbia County line.
Construction on the I-20 interchange could start in 2015, Cassell said.