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New Boling Bridge open to traffic over Lake Lanier
$19.7 million project replaces aging structure, with new home for ospreys
Boling Bridge
Traffic crosses Lake Lanier at the Hall-Forsyth county line Friday, Aug. 3, 2018, minutes after the opening of the new Boling Bridge. - photo by By Scott Rogers

The new Boling Bridge on Dawsonville Highway/Ga. 53 at the Hall-Forsyth County border opened Friday afternoon.

The $19.7 million bridge, which crosses the Chestatee River, had been scheduled to reopen Thursday, Aug. 2, but the traffic shift was delayed due to rain.

The speed limit on the new bridge is still 35 miles per hour. The Georgia Department of Transportation is advising drivers to slow down through the work zone.

Boling bridge
- photo by By Scott Rogers
The completion date for the project is March 2019, which includes time for tearing down the former structure build in the 1950s. Katie Strickland, GDOT district spokeswoman, said an exact date for demolishing the old structure has not been determined yet because AT&T still needs to turn on the new utilities that have gone up at the site.

Work is not yet done; final asphalt topping is still needed, along with additional grading of each side of the new approaches.

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. The old bridge opened in 1957, according to GDOT.