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GDOT awards Hwy 81 county line bridge replacement contract
Construction to be completed by November 2021
Hwy 81 Bridge replacement
COVINGTON — Bridge engineering and building has changed since 1948 when the State Route (SR) 81 bridge over the South River was erected connecting Henry and Newton counties.
Last week, the Georgia Department of Transportation officially awarded a replacement project for the 72-year-old structure to Wright Brothers Construction Company totaling $4.299 million construction investment.
The proposed project will replace the existing bridge at SR 81/Keys Road on the existing alignment and require a nine-month duration off-site detour during construction. The proposed typical section has two, 12-foot travel lanes and 10-foot shoulders (four feet paved and six feet unpaved) with rural side ditches. The total length of the project is approximately 0.42 miles.
The assigned state highway detour totals 34 miles, though local non-truck traffic can find shorter ways around the work closure. GDOT selected the off-site detour method and duration to reduce environmental and property impacts, while expediting construction and reducing cost.
Additional bridge width would be constructed on the east side of the existing bridge, and the new profile raised. A temporary turn-around area will be constructed during the off-site detour to facilitate school bus traffic on the Henry County side.

Official completion is listed at Nov. 30, 2021. Timing of the construction detour will be announced when schedules become available.