1 vote

I-85 Piedmont Avenue Overpass


Collapsed bridge, fire still burning underneath


View this photo at pbs.twimg.com

BH Photo #384877


Street Views 


Concrete viaduct carrying I-85 over Piedmont Road, Peachtree Creek, and DOT storage area burned and then northbound lanes collapsed on March 30, 2017. Southbound lanes damaged and closed also, though did not collapse. Suspect wooden spools of PVC tubing stored under viaduct ignited somehow. (Shown on google street view.) Arson is suspected with 3 individuals arrested.

Key location on Atlanta's highway system, loss of this bridge will cause traffic nightmares for all of Atlanta for a considerable amount of time. Fortunately, no injuries.

Reopening tentatively scheduled for June 15, 2017, with contractor incentives for finishing prior to that date.


Lost Concrete deck girder bridge over Piedmont Avenue and Peachtree Creek on I-85
Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia
Destroyed by fire, NB lanes collapsed
Future prospects
Will be rebuilt as quickly as possible, reopening set for June 15, 2017
Destroyed by fire March 30, 2017
Concrete deck girder viaduct over Piedmont Avenue, S Fork Peachtree Creek, and empty land
Length of largest span: 119.1 ft.
Total length: 4,151.1 ft. (0.8 mi.)
Deck width: 155.8 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+33.81532, -84.36373   (decimal degrees)
33°48'55" N, 84°21'49" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/744012/3744805 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Northeast Atlanta
Average daily traffic (as of 2012)
Inventory numbers
GA 12105510 (Georgia bridge number on the National Bridge Inventory)
BH 76351 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of March 2018)
Overall condition: Fair
Superstructure condition rating: Good (7 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Good (7 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 78 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • April 23, 2017: Updated by Roger Deschner: Changed name to Piedmont Ave Overpass, SB lanes destroyed too, clarified description, reopening date; add new street view
  • March 30, 2017: New Street View added by Roger Deschner


  • Roger Deschner - rogerdeschner [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Wikipedia


I-85 northbound over S Fork Peachtree Creek Viaduct
Posted April 2, 2017, by Roger Deschner (rogerdeschner [at] gmail [dot] com)

I'm not sure either. More recent reports would seem to pinpoint the failed spans as being part of the Piedmont Avenue overpass and viaduct. The fire location was just northeast of Piedmont Avenue, and google street views from Piedmont under the bridge also show the suspicious spools. I originally added this, and I'll fix it up when better information becomes available.

Georgia DOT inspectors have now also condemned the southbound lanes as having been damaged by the fire badly enough to require replacement, even though that bridge did not collapse.

I-85 northbound over S Fork Peachtree Creek Viaduct
Posted April 2, 2017, by Ed Hollowell (erhollowell [at] aol [dot] com)

He looks like a scoundrel to me.

I-85 northbound over S Fork Peachtree Creek Viaduct
Posted April 1, 2017, by James Baughn (webmaster [at] bridgehunter [dot] com)

I'm not sure if we have the right NBI listing for the collapsed bridge. This one seems to fit the dimensions better:


Curiously, the Associated Press story about the collapse identifies the wrong bridge. The story says: "Built in 1953 and renovated in 1985, the collapsed span scored a sufficiency rating of 94.6 out of 100 in its last inspection in 2015, said Natalie Dale, a spokeswoman for the Georgia DOT."

The only NBI bridge matching that description is on Highway 13 (Old Interstate 85) some distance away:


I-85 northbound over S Fork Peachtree Creek Viaduct
Posted April 1, 2017, by Anonymous


I-85 northbound over S Fork Peachtree Creek Viaduct
Posted April 1, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

News article


Concrete is not indestructible...

I-85 northbound over S Fork Peachtree Creek Viaduct
Posted March 31, 2017, by Anonymous