GDOT wants to replace Oglethorpe bridge

GDOT wants to replace Oglethorpe bridge

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - A popular Albany bridge could be getting a makeover.

The Oglethorpe bridge in downtown is more than 65 years old and in need of an upgrade.

The Georgia Department of Transportation wants to replace the four lane bridge with the recognizable arc because it no longer meets design standards.

The bridge was built in the 1950s and has seen better days.

“There has been changes and it has life on it. And everything has a useful life. And at some point you have to decide to replace that bridge or rehab it,” explained Bruce Maples, Albany city engineer.

The East Oglethorpe Bridge connects downtown Albany with East Albany (Source: WALB)
The East Oglethorpe Bridge connects downtown Albany with East Albany (Source: WALB)

Leaders are just in the concept phase right now, meaning construction is still a few years out, possibly by the year 2022.

Maples said it is not a city project, the DOT would be using funds to pay for it.

GDOT spokesperson Nita Birmingham explained it’s estimated to cost $16 million.

“You’re still going to have two lanes going in each direction. You’ll have a right turn lane and a left turn lane on the west end of the bridge. You’ll have a sidewalk on the north side of the bridge,” explained Birmingham.

There are four lanes of traffic and a sidewalk on the current East Oglethorpe Bridge (Source: WALB)
There are four lanes of traffic and a sidewalk on the current East Oglethorpe Bridge (Source: WALB)

Once construction is underway there are multiple proposed routes for traffic like utilizing the Broad Avenue Bridge, Oak Ridge Drive, and Liberty Expressway.

There will be a detour public information open house meeting on Thursday March 28 from 4 to 6 p.m.

Anyone can drop by the city government center to give their input.

Birmingham said feedback is written down and taken into consideration.

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