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GDOT: Avoid I-285 this weekend

GDOT: Avoid I-285 this weekend

(WXIA) -- The Georgia Department of Transportation has a strong word of warning for Atlanta-area drivers this weekend: avoid the Perimeter.

Crews will work on several I-285 projects, causing lane closures and heavy delays. Motorists are encouraged to take alternate routes where possible.

Some of the scheduled Perimeter work includes:

* 2 northbound right lanes will be closed between South Atlanta and Paces Ferry roads from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for concrete slab replacement and interchange construction

* 2 southbound outside lanes will be closed between Washington Road and Old National Highway from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 p.m. Saturday for bridge joint repairs

* 3 southbound left lanes near Flat Shoals Road will be closed Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. for paving

Work will continue in other parts of metro Atlanta as well.

Fayette Co. School Board hires superintendent's wife for new position

Fayette Co. School Board hires superintendent's wife for new position

FAYETTE COUNTY, Ga. -- The Fayette County Board of Education is under fire for hiring the superintendent's wife for a newly-created position with a salary of more than $75,000.

Last year, the school board closed four schools and cut hundreds of staffers to trim its budget.

Now, they've hired Dr. Susan Barrow – the wife of Superintendent Jody Barrow – for the newly-created position of Intervention Specialist.

"It wasn't like Dr. Barrow created the position for his spouse -- that just wasn't the case," said Jody Barrow.

Barrow defended the $75,000 salary of his wife.

"That's a teacher salary schedule," he said. "If you go and look at a 14-year veteran with a doctoral degree, that's exactly what they would be paid."

Major roadwork resumes this weekend

Major roadwork resumes this weekend

(WXIA) -- Last weekend, drivers got a bit of a reprieve when several major road projects were postponed. But all that work will resume this weekend.

Some of the problem areas include Interstate 20 in Rockdale and Newton counties, and I-285 in Cobb County.

As always, all roadwork is weather permitting. Rain could halt or postpone projects.

Weekend drivers should use caution and look for crews in these areas:

Bartow County
* One right southbound lane of I-75 will be closed four miles before Cass White Road from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for concrete slab removal and bridge raising.
* One left northbound lane of I-75 will be closed four miles after Cass White Road from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for concrete slab removal and bridge raising.

Back to school surprise: Weekend roadwork canceled

Back to school surprise: Weekend roadwork canceled

(WXIA) -- This weekend will be a holiday for Georgia families in more ways than one.

The Georgia Department of Transportation has suspended construction-related lane closures on all major interstates and highways within five miles of malls and shopping districts.

This will allow parents and students to enjoy the tax-free shopping weekend without the added stress of road delays.

"The sales tax holiday is an opportunity for Georgians to save a little money during these challenging economic times," GDOT Commissioner Keith Golden said. "The department is glad to offer some relief from lane closures as families prepare for school."

11Alive Ways to Save reporter Valerie Hoff has some of the best tax-free weekend deals. Find out how to get the most bang for your buck.

Woman shot while driving through Fayette County


FAYETTE COUNTY, Ga. -- Fayette County Sheriff's Deputies are investigating a shooting that happened Monday night.

According to Sheriff Barry Babb, deputies responded to Clayton County around 11 p.m. in reference to a person shot.

The victim told Clayton County Police she was shot while driving through North Fayette County. She said she was on Highway 85 near Roberts Road just north of Fayetteville. The victim was in the car with her 15 year-old granddaughter when a car described as an older model dark colored car pulled up beside them on the driver's side and shot at them.

After the woman was shot, she continued to drive until she called 911 at a nearby gas station in Clayton County.

Anyone with information about the case are asked to call Fayette County Sheriff's Detectives at 770-716-4750.


Fayette official: We'll try out driverless car

Fayette official: We'll try out driverless car

FAYETTE COUNTY, GA – A new survey shows three out of four Americans wouldn't mind having a driverless or autonomous car.

Fayette County Commission Chairman Steve Brown wants a lot of them.

"We've had auto pilot airplanes forever and we knew eventually it was going to come to cars," Brown told 11Alive News on Monday.

With his hands firmly on the wheel of his car, Brown said he believes driverless cars will soon be a reality on America's roads and he wants to steer them to his area.

Unlike more crowded parts of metro Atlanta, Brown believes Fayette County has just the right mix of state highways, neighborhoods and back roads to host the nation's first major test program.

"If you're going to test a vehicle, one thing you need is a lot of movement, a lot of test driving; we would have that," he said.

Atlanta-area unemployment jumps in June

Atlanta-area unemployment jumps in June

(WXIA) -- The unemployment rate in metro Atlanta climbed again last month.

June's rate was 7.6 percent, up from 7.2 percent in May, but much lower than last June's 8.6 percent.

Fayette County's unemployment rate was 7.1 percent in June.

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the increase is due to end-of-summer job loss among non-contract school workers, an influx of graduates and students entering the workforce, and temporary layoffs in manufacturing.

So far, metro Atlanta has gained slightly more than 58,000 jobs in 2014 -- a good sign for those who are looking for work.

Metro Athens had Georgia's lowest June unemployment rate, at 6.3 percent. The highest was 10.4 percent, in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region.