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Willy Sanjuan / Invision/Associated press file

Oprah Winfrey has been chosen as the keynote speaker for the commencement ceremony at Agnes Scott College in suburban Atlanta.

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Officials at the private liberal arts school announced Monday that Winfrey will receive an honorary degree during the May 13 ceremony. Winfrey hosted the popular talk show "The Oprah Winfrey Show" for 25 years, runs her own cable network, OWN, and is the founder of "O, The Oprah Magazine."

 

Jeff Martin / Associated Press

As preservationists restore Atlanta's colossal Cyclorama — a landmark that's a sort of 19th-century high-tech Civil War history lesson — they also plan to showcase an all-but-forgotten drawing that reveals a little-known fact: There once were plans for another Atlanta Cyclorama.

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John Bazemore / Associated Press

Bedbound for about a year now, Delores Dobson does not venture outdoors much.

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So, the patient at PruittHealth Home Health in Flowery Branch let her mind wander far and wide when asked to make a wish that might come true.

 

Her first thought was skydiving despite a fear of heights.

 

Martha Dalton / WABE

Scientists and science teachers in Georgia are preparing for what they see as the educational opportunity of a lifetime — a total eclipse of the sun on Aug. 21.

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Alison Guillory / WABE

This marks the first full week for Atlanta commuters trying to get around town following last week's fiery collapse of a bridge on Interstate 85.

Crews are working non-stop removing debris from the 350-foot section of the bridge that crumbled after a major fire erupted underneath.

That section is closed and some side roads in the area are blocked off, forcing commuters to take detours, clogging surface streets.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
associated press file

The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site plans to mark the 49th anniversary of the civil rights leader's death.

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The National Park Service says the Atlanta site will host the annual "King Remembrance Day" event Tuesday. King's daughter and CEO of the King Center, the Rev. Bernice King, plans to speak at a wreath-laying ceremony at historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, Heritage Sanctuary.

 

Mercedes-Benz Stadium
David Goldman / Associated Press

The Atlanta Falcons hope to have an update soon on whether issues regarding its new stadium — notably, its roof — will again delay its projected opening day.

 

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Challenges in building the retractable roof of Mercedes-Benz Stadium also raise questions about whether the Falcons could play in the stadium before the roof is operable, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

 

If not, would they have to play some home games elsewhere?

 

David Goldman / Associated Press

Atlanta area commuters crowded aboard mass transit trains and fewer cars hit the road Monday as public schools went on spring break, easing fears of fierce gridlock after last week's fiery collapse of a key interstate bridge.

Morning rush hour traffic in the Southeast's largest city appeared lighter than usual as the first full workweek opened since Thursday's inferno cut off the key highway link between downtown Atlanta and its northern suburbs.

Friday saw traffic snarls and long delays as drivers sought to work their way onto side streets around the bridge collapse.

Henry P. Taylor / Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP, Pool

The man accused of starting the raging fire that destroyed part of Interstate 85 north of downtown Atlanta was talking about smoking crack just before the blaze began, according to his arrest affidavit.

Basil Eleby told city and federal investigators that he had discussed smoking crack cocaine with two companions under the highway overpass before deciding to do the drug alone, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Saturday.

MARTA
Alison Guillory / WABE

With Interstate 85 out of commission, MARTA's preparing for more riders, including many who may be taking transit to work for the first time.

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To help out, volunteers will be at stations Monday and Tuesday morning, answering questions. They’re with the group MARTA Army, which is like a "friends of MARTA" association.

After I-85 Collapse, Ambulances Plot Alternate Routes

Mar 31, 2017
Pixabay Images / WABE

Along with other Atlanta drivers, ambulances will have to find alternative routes to get to patients after Interstate 85 shut down Thursday evening. 

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Many ambulances use I-85 to get to a number of hospitals in metro-Atlanta, including Piedmont Hospital, Northside Hospital, Atlanta Medical Center, and Grady Memorial. 

Atlanta Faces Months Of Traffic Woes After I-85 Bridge Collapse

Mar 31, 2017
Ali Guillory / WABE

Atlanta's dreadful rush-hour traffic could be extra nasty for months to come after a raging fire underneath Interstate 85 collapsed an elevated portion of the highway and shut down the heavily traveled route through the heart of the city.

Traffic was bumper to bumper on nearby streets as drivers were forced to take a detour Friday, the morning after the blaze caused the concrete to crumble.

New Community House Opens In English Avenue

Mar 31, 2017
The Mattie Freeland Community House is officially open in English Avenue.
Miranda Hawkins / WABE

It was a clear, warm day as English Avenue residents came together on Friday to honor a longtime member of the neighborhood. A red ribbon draped across the porch of a little home with purple pillars and a yellow door.

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The Mattie Freeland Community House was officially open.

Ali Guillory / WABE

Federal transportation officials have awarded $10 million in emergency funds to help repair a collapsed section of Interstate 85 in Atlanta.

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A U.S. Department of Transportation news release says Secretary Elaine Chao spoke to Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal on Friday and let him know about the money. The overpass collapsed during the Thursday evening rush hour after a massive fire broke out beneath the interstate in an area used to store construction materials.

Braves officials advised fans to buy their tickets and parking spots in advance, use its mobile apps to get to SunTrust Park and follow the signs when they arrive.
Tasnim Shamma / WABE

The collapse of a section of an interstate in Atlanta has heightened traffic concerns for the Braves' first game at new SunTrust Park.

The Braves are encouraging fans to adjust their plans to attend Friday night's exhibition against the New York Yankees. Only season-ticket holders are invited, but now the path to the stadium for those estimated 20,000 fans has become more challenging.

Alex Sanz / Associated Press

Following the collapse of a portion of an Interstate 85 overpass due to a massive fire Thursday, the interstate has been completely shut down between the I-75/Brookwood split and the North Druid Hills exit of I-85, according to an official announcement by the Georgia Department of Transportation.

Recently, the GDOT opened a few more routes to ease the congestion drivers saw Friday, including the readdition of a portion of I-85 Northbound, where drivers must now exit at the Buford Spring Connector.

WATCH: Listener-Submitted Video Of The I-85 Fire

Mar 31, 2017
Screenshot

On Thursday night, a massive fire led to the collapse of an overpass of Interstate 85 near Piedmont Road.

The blaze quickly engulfed the overpass, causing thick, black smoke that could be seen for miles in Atlanta. A WABE listener submitted this video of the fire that was captured from a passing car Thursday evening. 

Susanna Capelouto / WABE

Bridge inspectors have determined that the southbound lanes of Interstate 85 sustained damage from a fire that caused the adjacent northbound section to collapse and will also need to remain closed for the foreseeable future.

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Georgia Department of Transportation Commissioner Russell McMurry said in a news release Friday that the extent of the fire-related damage will require extensive reconstruction to ensure driver safety.

GDOT

If you have to work in town today, leave early and expect to wait in traffic.

A massive fire Thursday caused a bridge on Interstate 85, a heavily traveled interstate, to collapse.

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David Goldman / Associated Press

Many commuters in some of Atlanta's densely populated northern suburbs will have to find alternate routes or ride public transit for the foreseeable future after a massive fire caused a bridge on Interstate 85 to collapse, completely shutting down the heavily traveled highway.

 

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Susanna Capelouto / WABE

With Interstate 85 shut down between Interstate 75 and GA 400, the Georgia Department of Transportation and other transit agencies were scrambling Thursday night for options for commuters in a city already often laden with traffic. 

The interstate, which carries 250,000 cars per day, is a major thoroughfare for traffic heading north and south through Atlanta. Possible alternatives for drivers could include utilizing the Xpress Bus Service and Peach Pass express lanes.

Elizabeth Gaston

Part of an overpass on northbound Interstate 85 has collapsed after a massive fire. Smoke could be seen for miles all around Atlanta.

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The Atlanta Police Department tells WABE that conduit wiring stored under a portion of I-85 just north of the Piedmont Road overpass caught fire and was what caused the collapse.

SunTrust Park Pedestrian Bridges Not Ready For Exhibition

Mar 30, 2017
Braves officials advised fans to buy their tickets and parking spots in advance, use its mobile apps to get to SunTrust Park and follow the signs when they arrive.
Tasnim Shamma / WABE

SunTrust Park, the new Atlanta Braves stadium, will have three pedestrian bridges leading to parking areas. But as the Braves' first exhibition game kicks off tomorrow, those bridges aren't ready for pedestrian traffic. 

At Emory University, several students said they support the University adopting sanctuary policies even if it means losing state funding.
Tasnim Shamma / WABE

State lawmakers passed a bill Tuesday that would strip state funding from private colleges in Georgia that adopt "sanctuary policies," meaning the schools limit cooperation with immigration officials. 

So far, no colleges have said they won't cooperate. 

At Emory, students have protested, trying to get the university to declare itself a sanctuary campus.

Guns seized by the police are displayed during a news conference in New York, Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2015.
Seth Wenig / Associated Press

Federal authorities say they're working to fight gun trafficking in Georgia, including a dramatic increase in thefts of guns from licensed firearms dealers.

The U.S. attorney's office in Atlanta says it has worked with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to prosecute eight federal cases involving 32 defendants in the past four months.

Federal prosecutors say the ATF reported the following burglaries from licensed gun dealers in recent years:

Paideia Teens Create Interactive Civil Rights Tour

Mar 30, 2017
courtesy of vox

Eighth-graders from Jennifer Swift’s class at The Paideia School created an interactive map based on the Civil Rights Tour they took in February. While their photos and recollections from each stop are included below, for the complete experience of the trip enjoy the interactive Civil Rights Tour Map here.

The Stone Mountain Park Lasershow is a long-standing Atlanta event.
Courtesy of Stone Mountain Park

Spring has arrived in Atlanta, and the city is headed outside for food, art and more this weekend.

David Goldman / Associated Press

A Transportation Security Administration screener has been fired after she missed a loaded handgun in a passenger's carry-on bag at the world's busiest airport.

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WSB-TV reported Thursday that Atlanta police say passenger Katrina Jackson of Hoover, Alabama, was looking for her passport inside her purse and noticed her .38-caliber handgun while at the gate at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on Sunday. Jackson informed to officers who confiscated her gun and bag.

David Tulis / Associated Press

Steen Miles has died at the age of 70. The cause of death was lung cancer, according to various media reports.

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Miles, an Indiana native, was a reporter at 11Alive from 1984 to 1999 in various roles both in front of and behind the camera.  

Ian Palmer

The Atlanta Braves' new ballpark looks like a throwback stadium with its green seats, brick walls and its old-school, intimate feel.

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That's from an initial glance inside the park.

Beyond the stadium walls sits the real wow factor that could be a game-changer for the industry.

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