OPELIKA, Ala. (WRBL) – 26 months into a massive construction project along Interstate 85 in Opelika remains a headache for some motorists. An ALDOT spokesperson says when it’s done drivers should appreciate the safety improvements and ease of traffic congestion.
The extended construction site and lanes of traffic can be tricky to navigate. The video used in our report was safely filmed by a passenger in the vehicle.
Two years in and one to go, the massive bridge replacement project on I-85 in Opelika began in April 2021 and is set for completion Spring 2024. The initiative is funded in part by a $10.8 million U.S. DOT grant.
Bridges over Long Street, Norfolk Southern Railroad, and Highway 51 will feature eight feet shoulders, enhancing safety and easing congestion. Acceleration lanes from Exit 60 will be extended for safer merging onto 85.
The $32 million project was awarded to McInnis Construction, LLC, based in Summerdale, Alabama.
To minimize disruptions to motorists and maximize safety, ALDOT is utilizing the existing median as a temporary travel lane to keep traffic flowing. The design is said to maximize safety. However, some drivers say the lanes of traffic can be confusing and the roads are uneven and bumpy.
In response to those concerns, an ALDOT spokesperson says it’s important drivers slow down to the 45 mile an hour speed limit, and watch out for other vehicles, equipment, and workers.