Officials hope to repair I-85 bridge in Atlanta by June

In this aerial image made from a video provided by WSB-TV, a large fire that caused an overpass on Interstate 85 to collapse burns in Atlanta, Thursday, March 30, 2017. Witnesses say troopers were telling cars to turn around on the bridge because they were concerned about its integrity. Minutes later, the bridge collapsed. (WSB-TV via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT, ATLANTA TV OUT

ATLANTA (AP) – Georgia transportation officials hope to finish rebuilding a key interstate bridge by mid-June after a large fire caused its collapse last week.

Authorities have said the fire was started by a man under the bridge in an area north of downtown Atlanta. The collapse on Thursday forced the closure of a portion of Interstate 85 and workers are continuing to remove scorched debris from the area.

Georgia Department of Transportation officials said they will offer financial incentives to contractors to meet interim deadlines and have the bridge repair done by June 15.

The closed section of I-85 is a key link to some of the city’s biggest suburbs. It carries about 400,000 vehicles a day in a city where there are surprisingly few alternative routes for its size.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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