Aging Yadkin River Bridge Near Salisbury to Close Permanently Wednesday Night Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Gov. Bev Perdue today announced that the narrow, aging Yadkin River Bridge near Salisbury will close permanently, starting Wednesday, Aug. 1. Crews will temporarily shift I-85 South traffic onto the new I-85 North bridge over the Yadkin River tonight, allowing two lanes of traffic to flow in each direction on the new bridge.

“When I came into office, I made a promise to North Carolina that I would find a way to replace the Yadkin River Bridge,” said Gov. Perdue. “Today marks an important milestone in delivering that promise and providing a safer, more efficient way to move goods and help people access jobs, healthcare and education.”

I-85 is the most direct and heavily traveled route between Richmond, Va. and Atlanta, Ga. More than 60,000 vehicles – many of them tractor trailers – drive over the Yadkin River on I-85 between Charlotte and the Triad each day. The improvements under way will help bolster the state’s economy and attract new businesses that depend on reliable interstate travel to North Carolina.

The N.C. Department of Transportation opened the new I-85 North bridge over the Yadkin River on May 5. At that time, crews moved I-85 North traffic off the old bridge and onto two lanes of the new four-lane bridge. When I-85 South traffic temporarily shifts off the old bridge, it will use the remaining two lanes of the new I-85 North bridge.

Crews are currently building the new I-85 South bridge over the Yadkin River, which is scheduled to be complete in November. Once the new, wider sections of I-85 South that connect to the new bridge are complete in April 2013, NCDOT will move I-85 South traffic onto the new southbound bridge.

This work is part of the I-85 Corridor Improvement Project in Davidson and Rowan counties.

·         The first phase of the project includes widening 3.3 miles of I-85 from four to eight lanes from north of Long Ferry Road (Exit 81) in Rowan County to just north of the N.C. 150 interchange in Davidson County, reconstructing the N.C. 150 interchange and replacing eight bridges, including the Yadkin River bridge.

·         The second phase of the project extends the widening work 3.8 miles to just north of I-85 Business in Davidson County and reconstructs the I-85 interchange at Belmont Road.

 The project is scheduled to be complete in May 2013.

 The funding for the $201.5 million project came, in part, from Gov. Perdue’s Mobility Fund. She proposed its creation as a way to generate the money needed to pay for critical transportation projects of regional or statewide significance that relieve congestion and enhance mobility. The I-85 Corridor Improvement Project is the first project to receive money from the Mobility Fund.

For more information about the project, visit or follow NCDOT’s I-85 Twitter feed,


 (Editor’s note: Photos of the new I-85 bridges are available on the NCDOT Flickr page.)



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