Cheshire Bridge set to reopen all lanes 20 months after massive fire

After nearly two years, Atlanta's Cheshire Bridge Road Corridor will finally be fully back open to traffic.

On Aug. 4, 2021, a gas line under the bridge on the road ruptured, causing a fire that burned for hours. 

When the flames were put out, officials determined the bridge was too weakened to be saved. That set off more than an ordeal that lasted more than a year. Construction has blocked most of this stretch of road for customers, workers, and neighbors for 20 months. On Halloween of 2022, crews managed to reopen one lane in each direction.

With traffic diverted into residential neighborhoods, the impact devastated local businesses that were still reeling from the pandemic. Scott Duke, the owner of the Greek restaurant Taverna Plaka, says they saw business drop by 40 percent. Duke says that's still not the worst of the economic impact, saying he's heard from other retail spaces that lost nearly 90 percent of their business.  

That will all hopefully change Tuesday afternoon when city officials will fully reopen the busy road - ending the construction project and allowing people living and working in the area to finally return to normal operations.

Before all that happens, however, officials will be closing down lanes in both directions for an hour and a half to celebrate.

The city says drivers should avoid Cheshire Bridge over South Fork Creek from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., which is when Mayor Andre Dickens and the Atlanta Department of Transportation are expected to host the ceremony.

Drivers will find officers positioned at the following intersections re-directing traffic throughout the ceremony:

  • Piedmont Road NE and Cheshire Bridge NE
  • Lenox Road NE and Cheshire Bridge NE
  • Lindbergh Drive NE/Lavista Road NE and Cheshire Bridge Road NE

Lanes will reopen at 3:30 p.m.