McDuffie County getting new I-20 interchange

THOMSON --- McDuffie County will get a new Interstate 20 interchange -- the county's third -- that should be completed by summer of 2013, officials said Friday.

"It will be a tremendous asset to this community," said Charlie Newton Jr., the county commission chairman.

The new interstate access will be at Three Points Road (County Road 21), said Cissy McNure, a spokeswoman for the Georgia Department of Transportation.

Bids for the project went out Friday, McNure said, and are due April 22. The project, with an estimated cost of more than $11 million, could begin in July, and construction is expected to take about two years, she said.

The interchange will certainly benefit the county, Newton said.

"We can make it an interstate access industrial park. That's very valuable to these large industries," he said.

The project also will allow large trucks to circumvent downtown Thomson and have direct access to the interstate.

"This will get the congestion level down, and people will feel safer," Newton said. "The streets are too narrow for these trucks."

As far as development near the interchange after its completion, Newton said, "over time, definitely; immediately, not likely.

"Anytime you have an interchange you'll have significant growth."