I-75 exit bridge demolition to begin in Lowndes County, GDOT says

September 2021 photo of the Exit 2 interchange, before traffic was moved to newly-constructed...
September 2021 photo of the Exit 2 interchange, before traffic was moved to newly-constructed lanes. A contractor plans to begin removing the old bridge, pictured on the right, the night of Dec. 6. It was built in 1961.(GDOT)
Published: Nov. 30, 2021 at 1:12 PM EST
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LOWNDES COUNTY, Ga. (WCTV) - The Georgia Department of Transportation says the demolition of the old Interstate 75 bridge at the Exit 2/Lake Park/Bellville Road interchange in Lowndes County is scheduled to begin on Dec. 6.

The bridge was built in 1961, and once the demolition is done, a contractor will build new spans in the same spot, GDOT’s press release says.

On Nov. 10, GDOT shifted traffic to two lanes of the new overpass built adjacent to the old bridge. GDOT says staging construction in this way prevents having to close the interchange.

The bridge’s removal will happen at night and will impact traffic. One lane over I-75 will close at 7 p.m. on Dec. 6, and both lanes will close at 10 p.m. At that time, traffic will exit at the interchange, cross Bellville Road and return to I-75, the release says.

“If removal of the span isn’t finished in one night the same schedule will apply on Dec. 7. Removal of the bridge span over northbound lanes is scheduled Dec. 8 and 9, if a second night is needed,” the release says.

Lanes will be closed at the same times listed above if need be. If weather impacts the demolition, GDOT will post updates on social media.

During the demolition, the contractor will cut and remove large chunks of the spans using chains and a crane. The lane closures are necessary to keep drivers safe, according to GDOT.

Law enforcement will be in the area to help direct traffic.

“When the double lane closure begins deputies will be stationed at the bottom of the ramp and on Bellville Road at the top of the ramp,” the release says.

GDOT says the interchange’s reconstruction started in spring 2020 and is scheduled to be done in September 2022. GDOT anticipates the construction will improve operation and accommodate any future widening of the interstate.

The total cost of the project is around $49.3 million, according to GDOT. That total includes preliminary engineering, right-of-way acquisition and construction.

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