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The city of Athens is where the University of Georgia is located. Most of the city is in Clarke County, although Athens does stick a toe over the line into Oconee County.
As you might expect, most of Athens’ roads are paved. Of the 572.8 miles of roadways that are in the city limits of Athens and that are within Clarke County, 563.89 of those miles are paved and 8.91 are unpaved. Unlike the majority of Georgia cities, according to statistics released by the Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT), Athens has no city streets at all. Of the paved roads, 50.72 miles’ worth are Georgia state routes, 513.17 miles are Clarke County roads, and none of the road miles are Athens-maintained city streets. All of the unpaved streets are maintained by Clarke County as county roadways.
The Georgia Department of Transportation (DOT) also measures the “lane mileage” in a city. The “road mileage” is calculated by looking at the total length of a road in miles, but the “lane mileage” separately measures the miles covered by each lane in the road. For example, a two-lane road that has one lane running in each direction will have exactly twice as many “lane miles” as “road miles.” In Athens, most Clarke County roads have just two lanes, since the average number of lanes on those roads is 2.08. The state highways are wider, and average 3.67 lanes. On the Clarke County side of Athens, the city has 1269.74 miles of lanes.
Across the border into Oconee County, Athens has only .57 miles of paved roadway, and no unpaved roads. All of the Athens roads that are in Oconee County are state routes. The state route that runs through Oconee County averages 3 lanes in width.
The City of Athens sees a good deal of traffic, especially on the Georgia state roads. The DOT measures the total number of miles that Athens drivers put on their roads by looking at the “Daily Vehicle Miles Traveled” on each road in the city. Each day Athens drivers put 2,630,915.72 miles on roads in Athens on the Clarke County side, and another 3460.47 miles on roads that lie within Athens on the small bit of the city that stretches across into Oconee County. In Clarke County, Georgia maintains 8.9% of the roads in Athens, and those roads carry 42.7% of the traffic that goes through Athens each day. Each day those Georgia roads carry 1,123,748.78 vehicle miles of travel. The county roads bear another 1,507,130.94 daily vehicle miles, meaning that a total of 2,630,915.72 miles are put on Athens roadways every single day. Of course, since only state routes go through Athens on the Oconee side, 100% of the miles traveled are traveled on state highways. Athens drivers put 3460.47 Daily VMT on that small but very busy stretch of just .57 miles.