May 10 (UPI) -- Interstate 85 in Atlanta, closed since a section collapsed March 30, will reopen in time for Monday's commute, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal announced.
Deal said the 10-lane highway will be ready for use one month ahead of the planned rebuilding schedule.
"This is a day of celebration. It demonstrates the can-do attitude Georgia has," he said in a press conference at the state Capitol.
Georgia Department of Transportation Commissioner Russell McMurry said I-85's northbound lanes will likely open Saturday, with the southbound lanes open by Sunday. It was expected that the rebuilding project, projected to cost $16.6 million, would take until June 15.
The road was closed after a fire, allegedly set by a homeless man, spread to construction materials stored under the bridge, rendering about 350 feet of the road in both directions unsafe and unusable. Portions of the highway collapsed in the fire.
McMurry said the effort to fix the road was aided by the weather; only one full day of work was lost to rain.
The company contracted to repair the damage can qualify for up to $3.1 million in incentives for finishing ahead of schedule.
The damaged section of the interstate, which runs through downtown, usually sees about 243,000 vehicles a day.