Plans made to replace 75-year-old North Carolina bridge

FILE - Traffic moves smoothly over the new I-85 North bridge over the Yadkin River in Davidson and Rowan counties in May 2012. (NCDOT)

NORTH WILKESBORO — Plans are advancing to replace a 75-year-old bridge that serves as one of only three routes between Forsyth and Yadkin counties, North Carolina transportation officials said.

Engineers are finalizing designs to replace a bridge on N.C. 67 over the Yadkin River, the N.C. Department of Transportation said in a news release on Thursday. The agency said it has started property negotiations.

The current schedule includes opening the project up for bidding in the summer of 2020 followed by the start of construction several weeks later.

The new bridge will be built slightly north of the existing bridge, which will remain open during construction so drivers may continue crossing the river.

“We’re excited to be replacing an aging structure with something new that will serve thousands of drivers each day,” said Joe Laws, bridge project manager. “Keeping the existing bridge open during construction is important so there will be little disruption.”

Plans include building the new structure to modern standards with wider lanes, increased weight limits and additional safety features.