A major milestone for the Gateway Project

An aerial shot of the Gateway Project
An aerial shot of the Gateway Project from Nov. | Photo by 85-385 Gateway

One of the Upstate’s most highly anticipated projects is one major step closer to completion. Yesterday, the 85/385 Gateway Project announced “the completion of the 85/385 Gateway interchange configuration,” meaning all routes are officially open. Big news if you’re one of the ~200,000 vehicles that travel the intersection daily.

The Gateway Project is a transformation of the intersection of Interstates 85 and 385 in Greenville County – intended to reduce traffic congestion, improve safety, increase the interchange capacity + provide a financial boost to the local economy. 

Let’s take a look at the project scope by the numbers:

  • 2. Two bridges will be rehabilitated/widened (Garlington Rd. overpass bridges).
  • 3. A portion of I-385 will be widened to three lanes.
  • 4. I-85 will be widened to four lanes (from the interchange northbound to Pelham Rd.).
  • 10. Ten new bridge structures will be constructed.
  • 350,000. The new infrastructure is designed to handle 350,000 vehicles per day in the future.
  • ~$250M. The project is estimated to cost ~$250 million (70% of which is funded by the Federal Highway Administration).  

Some other aspects of the Gateway Project include replacing tight loop ramps with flyovers + rehabilitating a section of I-85 north and south of the interchange. Work on Chrome Dr., Roper Mountain Rd. + Woodruff Rd. are also included on the list of improvements (read the full project scope here).

Project plan overview of construction area including proposed design solution | Photo from 85385gateway.com

So, what’s left? Here’s a rundown of the remaining tasks to be completed:

  • Final layer of asphalt
  • Pavement markings and raised pavement markers
  • Bridge painting
  • Concrete grinding for smoothness
  • Overhead and ground mounted signs
  • Fencing
  • Digital message signs and traffic cameras
  • Grassing 
  • Woodruff Rd. widening 
  • Roper Mountain Rd. final alignment
  • Other items as determined by on-going inspections

While all routes are open + there will be no more traffic shifts – drivers may continue to see some nighttime lane closures as work continues.

Construction on the system began in Feb. 2016 and final completion is slotted for 2020. We’ll keep you updated as the project progresses, but in the meantime, you can stay up-to-date by following the project’s official Twitter account, Facebook page, or by subscribing to the mailing list.  

Pro tip: If you are traveling through the Gateway Project using your GPS, some systems have not updated to the new routes – so pay close attention to physical street signs.