Crews removing temporary bridge over Yadkin River today
North Carolina Department of Transportation
RALEIGH — The first bridge to go up on the southern segment of the Interstate 85 Corridor Improvement Project near Salisbury is now coming down. Crews will begin removing the temporary work bridge over the Yadkin River today.
“This is a major milestone in the life of this project, because it signifies that construction of the new I-85 North and South bridges is now complete,” said Pat Ivey, North Carolina Department of Transportation Division 9 Engineer. “The temporary work bridge has served its purpose in helping upgrade and modernize this heavily traveled section of I-85 in Davidson and Rowan counties, and now it’s time to take it down.”
Contractor Flatiron-Lane, A Joint Venture built the half-mile temporary work bridge in between where the new I-85 North and South bridges over the Yadkin River now stand. It served as the platform on which crews stationed heavy equipment to drill deep holes for the new bridges’ underground support columns, fill those columns with concrete and install girders.
Anchored in the rock bed, the temporary work bridge could support 2,000 tons, which is the equivalent of about 1,000 SUVs. Flatiron-Lane needed that kind of strength to bear the weight of as many as six 230-ton cranes at one time.
Construction started on the temporary work bridge in November 2010 and ended in July 2011. Flatiron-Lane estimates it will take several months to dismantle and remove it from the area. They plan to re-use key pieces of the temporary work bridge on another portion of the project – the replacement of the neighboring U.S. 29/70 bridge over the Yadkin River. Those pieces will help comprise a temporary work bridge next to where the new U.S. 29/70 bridge will stand.
This month, crews completed construction on the new I-85 South bridge; however, NCDOT cannot open it to traffic until crews finish widening and realigning the interstate on both sides of the bridge. That work is scheduled to be complete by April 2013. Until then, I-85 South traffic will continue to flow on two of the four new lanes of I-85 North.
NCDOT broke ground in September 2010 on the southern segment of the I-85 Corridor Improvement Project, which involves replacing eight bridges, reconstructing the N.C. 150 interchange and widening 3.3 miles of I-85 from just north of Long Ferry Road (exit 81) to just north of N.C. 150. The northern segment extends the reach of the interstate widening 3.8 miles from north of N.C. 150 to just north of I-85 Business and includes reconstructing the Belmont Road interchange. Work on both segments is concurrent and scheduled to be complete by May.
For more information on the $201.5 million project, visit www.i-85yadkinriver.com. To receive instant updates on traffic pattern changes, construction-related congestion and project milestones, follow NCDOT’s I-85 Twitter feed, https://twitter.com/NCDOT_I85.