The Interstate 85 interchange that leads to the Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia plant in West Point opened to traffic Wednesday, Dec. 10.

The $80.7 million project at Exit 6 in Troup County was completed a month ahead of schedule, Gov. Sonny Perdue’s office announced in a news release.

Opening the interchange will make it easier for Kia’s trainees and prospective employees to access training and production facilities, Kia Human Resources Director Randy Jackson said in the release.

The project was the largest design-build project undertaken by the Georgia Department of Transportation to date. 

A design-build project expedites the building process by integrating design and construction functions to cut out time it takes to field multiple bids.

Kia is investing $1.2 billion in the plant, the Korean auto maker’s first in the U.S.  Combined with suppliers that have set up shop in Georgia, the state estimates that the project will create 6,000 jobs.

As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...