Flyover bridge construction ahead of schedule

Traffic moves along College Avenue near the construction site of the new flyover bridge Monday.

Photo: Todd Gill, Flyer staff

Drivers in north Fayetteville could have access to the new College Avenue flyover bridge a few months sooner than expected.

Now that the beams for the bridge are in place, crews are preparing the steel forms needed to pour the concrete deck, a task that wasn’t set to begin until next spring. With the work ahead of schedule, city officials now estimate the project to be complete by May 2014 instead of July.

“We’re really pleased with the work the contractor has done,” said Chris Brown, city engineer, earlier this month. “The project has gone very, very smoothly so far.”

Brown said construction of an exit ramp traffic signal will begin sometime this month. Drivers on the flyover bridge will have the choice of entering the Fulbright Expressway or exiting at the commercial area on Mall Avenue near Olive Garden restaurant.

College Avenue flyover bridge

The College Avenue flyover bridge is one of three projects in the Fayetteville Expressway Economic Development Corridor plan, which also includes a completed roundabout at Futrall Drive and Northhills Boulevard, and an extension and widening of Van Asche Drive between Gregg and Garland avenues.

The flyover will provide an alternative for northbound College Avenue drivers who normally make a U-turn at Joyce Boulevard to access the Fulbright Expressway. Once complete, drivers may instead take a left lane bridge just north of Millsap Road that extends over southbound College Avenue traffic to head west on the Fulbright Expressway or exit onto Mall Avenue between Olive Garden and Logan’s Roadhouse.

The estimated $7.5 million flyover project is 80 percent funded by a 2006 federal earmark appropriation. The city’s portion will be paid from the Transportation Bond Fund. Emery Sapp and Sons, Inc. is handling construction of the bridge and roadway improvements, Jacobs Engineering, Inc. is providing construction management and inspection services, and SourceGas, Inc. relocated a gas main.