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I-985 bridge at Exit 14 fails strength test. Here’s what’s next
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Traffic drives towards the bridge at exit 14 on Tuesday, March 5, 2019. The bridge over Interstate 985 at exit 14 is being redone because of failed strength tests. - photo by Austin Steele

Most of the driving surface of the new bridge that’s part of the Exit 14 project in South Hall will have to be redone because of failed strength tests, according to the Georgia Department of Transportation.

Three of the Interstate 985 structure’s four driving deck spans didn’t meet DOT standards, district spokeswoman Katie Strickland said.

In a Feb. 14 letter obtained by The Times, the DOT told contractor G.P.’s Enterprises Inc. of Auburn, “Our review and analysis of both current facts and future unknowns leaves us with no option but to request (the three) deck spans … be replaced in their entirety.”

The work could take place in April, Strickland said.

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The driving surface of the bridge over Interstate 985 at exit 14 is being redone because of failed strength tests. - photo by Austin Steele

The DOT will know further details “closer to the time when they bring us the exact plan,” but the work could take place at night when there’s less impact on traffic, Strickland said.

As for fixing the bridge, “there will be no cost to the taxpayer,” she added. “... (DOT) won’t be participating in the costs to correct the deficiencies.”

Otherwise, she said she expects the overall interchange should still be finished by its original completion date of Aug. 31, 2019.

“They can continue working on the ramps and lanes,” Strickland said. “There is other stuff they can do.”

Since 2017, work has been well underway on all parts of the $34 million project, which would connect Martin Road at Falcon Parkway Ga. 13 on the east side of I-985 to H.F. Reed at Thurmon Tanner Parkway on the west side.


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