DOT works with Upstate Co. to repair columns for I-85/385 project

(WSPA)- If you’re driving northbound on 85, you’re sure to see construction workers under the I-85/385 interchange.

Crews are working on repairing a column holding up the bridge that had started to crumble.

The DOT found it safe for cars to pass, but did have to shut the bridge down for trucks for a few days.

However, an Upstate Company stepped in to fix the problem.

If you see the column covered in black, that’s the material used to fix the crumbling bridge.

Engineers tell us an inch of that material can hold around 3-thousand pounds.

The technology has been around for about 15 years, usually used for buildings, but it’s being used more and more for bridges.

The columns are only supposed to be around for another nine months, so the carbon fiber made by Milliken Infrastructure Solutions is just a temporary solution for this project.

Engineers tell us it’s strong enough to last years.

The material is also extremely light, can blend in with existing infrastructure, and is less expensive than traditional ways of fixing bridges.

They say for this project, he material was the perfect fix.

“It could loosen that and potentially small pieces could fall off, so in this case it’s a perfect repair to go ahead and confine that and prevents that, so not only will it provide strength to the column, it will provide safety to the workers working around it.”

He also says motorists shouldn’t be concerned either.

The company uses the material on projects across the country, but they’ll be using it more on projects across the state in the next few weeks.

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