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
“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
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.
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.
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.
project is scheduled to be complete in May 2013.
The funding for the $201.5 million project came, in part, from Gov.
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 www.i-85yadkinriver.com or follow
NCDOT’s I-85 Twitter feed, https://twitter.com/ncdot_i85.
(Editor’s note: Photos of the new I-85 bridges
are available on the NCDOT Flickr page.)
|Click this image to view at original resolution|