I-85 is back open! - CBS46 News

I-85 is back open!

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Both the north and southbound lanes of I-85 have reopened weeks ahead of schedule following a fire that sent a section of the roadway crumbling down on March 30.

The Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) opened all lanes on I-85 northbound at Piedmont Road Friday evening, prior to the southbound lanes opening Saturday. 

READ MORE: Everything you need to know about the I-85 collapse and reconstruction

This all comes after a massive fire caused a stretch of the roadway to collapse in late March. It took GDOT crews just over six weeks to demolish and repair the interstate, almost a month and a half ahead of the initial scheduled completion date.

Crews were able to complete the job so quickly because workers logged 12 hour shifts and new technology was used to help speed up the process.

There was also a financial incentive to finish the project early, a $3.1 million bonus for the contractor. By the time the southbound lanes open Monday morning, crews will have met the deadline in order to receive the incentive.

Some people wondered if crews finished too fast, compromising the safety of the roadway, but the president of CW Matthews, the company in charge of completing the repairs, says drivers need not worry.

It's critical to make sure that we're delivering a good product for the tax payers," said president Dan Garcia. "This project is very safe just like every project we field. So no concerns there. Quality is very important and our reputation is on the line."

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