The historic Boling Bridge connecting north Forsyth and Hall counties along Hwy. 369 opened in 1957 and was in use from that time until being replaced earlier this year.
Now, three local governments, including Forsyth County, will have a piece of the bridge to keep as a memento of its history.
During a recent ceremony, officials representing the city of Gainesville and Hall and Forsyth counties were given 500-pound pieces of the former bridge as keepsakes by the Georgia Department of Transportation.
“These structures are a piece of history for the surrounding communities. Finding a way to memorialize it was a challenge, as we can’t give everyone a piece of the bridge,” said Brent Cook, district engineer. “By working together with Scott Bridge Company [the company that replaced the bridge] and donating some of the green steel to Gainesville, Hall County and Forsyth County, the public can remember this iconic green bridge for years to come.”
A section of the green steel at the top of the bridge will also be displayed at the GDOT office in Gainesville. Cook said it was important to have a piece of the former bridge on display.
“This was the section of the structure that connects the bridge beams to the girders and columns,” he said. “It was fortunate that we could have one of the gusset plates located here at the district office, as it embodies our mission with the Georgia DOT to provide a safe, connected transportation system.”
Traffic opened for the new, $19.7 million bridge in early August.
The completion date for the project is March 2019, which includes time for tearing down the former structure.
The project features two 65-foot platforms for ospreys, which were previously nesting on top of the old green bridge.
Work began in June 2016, and the bridge had periodic one-lane closures to accommodate for the project.