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The Twilight Criterium Route Is Changing

The downtown route for the popular Twilight Criterium bike races will be changing due to an ongoing streetscape project on Clayton Street that will coincide with the April 24–25 event.

Twilight’s main races have traditionally started on Clayton and College Avenue, turning onto Lumpkin Street, then Washington Street, then Thomas Street and back to Clayton.

Next year, however, races will start at College and Washington, turning onto Jackson, then Hancock Avenue, then Hull Street, then back to Washington.

One advantage of the new route, Twilight organizer Gene Dixon told the Athens Downtown Development Authority this afternoon, is that the upper levels of the College Avenue parking deck will remain accessible to the public. (Cars can also access the Washington Street deck via the Clayton entrance.)

Another is that the majority of the buildings along the new route are government-owned and closed on weekends, so street closures won’t disrupt as many downtown retailers as in the past, ADDA Executive Director Pamela Thompson said.

As part of the route changes, race qualifying, the beer garden and the Athens Americana festival will be moved from College Avenue to Washington at Pulaski Street, where AthFest also is held, Dixon said.