Tips for navigating around Georgia Dome traffic - FOX 35 News Orlando

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Tips for navigating around Georgia Dome traffic

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ATLANTA, Ga.---For the next three years, if you plan to be anywhere near the Georgia Dome, expect delays and plan ahead. That's the word from officials as we head into fall, the Dome's busiest time of the year.

The one-million square foot construction zone for the new Atlanta Falcons stadium is bringing with it some changes. Georgia Dome Drive is gone, parts of Mitchell Street and Martin Luther King Junior Drive are closed to traffic and there's a lot fewer parking spaces for any event near crowded the Georgia Dome.

Crews are getting ready, rising up for the Falcons second home preseason game on Saturday. "We knew we'd have some challenges that first weekend, but we thought it went okay. We've looked at some things, made some adjustments and hopefully this week will go a little better," explains Dome Spokesperson, Jason Kirksey.

Keep in mind, only 10 feet separate the Dome, and the construction zone. "That's the biggest thing, is that most people have not been downtown since construction started on this project in March and don't realize the magnitude of the project that is happening a mere feet from the Georgia Dome," adds Kirksey.

And it's not just football. Visitors to the nearby Georgia World Congress Center have also been a little turned around by the street closures. "Construction ahead, be prepared, or something because we were like, where to go," recalls Maria Macias, a tourist from Mexico attending a convention with her father.

Pablo Macias says his GPS wasn't sure how to get around the construction, "It was asking us to go through a certain street but then it's closed and you need to find out what to do."

If you're planning on driving downtown, don't forget the parking lots on the Southside of the stadium are gone. "We lost about 1,400 parking spots total, that we controlled plus some other lots around here that had their own private parking," Kirksey says.

Since parking will be at a premium, officials are urging you to avoid the traffic tie ups and take MARTA instead.

"If you're going to be coming down to a game, the first thing you need to do is plan ahead. If you don't have a pre-paid parking pass for any event, find a MARTA station and jump on the train," encourages Kirksey.

"Marta is a really good mode of transportation, if you know how to use MARTA, you go everywhere," adds Pablo.

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