CONCORD, N.C. (WBTV) - The North Carolina Department of Transportation is changing plans again surrounding a proposed bridge closure in Cabarrus County.
Two weeks ago, NCDOT announced that it would close the Highway 3 Concord Lake Road bridge over I-85 to speed up the Interstate 85 widening project. The bridge was slated to shut down in October and be closed for approximately a year.
But business owners went to the Concord City Council to ask for help, saying the closure of the bridge - with no alternative or diversion bridge - would severely impact their businesses.
"Without this traffic on this bridge, there is no business in this area," Ruchik Mehta said in late August. "I'm hopeful that the Secretary of Transportation can understand the situation and can revise their decision."
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City leaders in Kannapolis and Concord, as well as county commissioners for Cabarrus County, expressed concern and asked the DOT not to close the bridge.
Tuesday, NC DOT responded to those concerns.
The agency said in a letter to "concerned stakeholders" that it received numerous concerns over the proposed closure.
NCDOT says it revisited the plan with the designers and contractor and came up with an alternative plan that would "allow us to continue the plan to accelerate I-85 construction, but also minimize impact" on nearby businesses.
They are considering an option that would limit the closure of the bridge to 30 days, avoiding a heavy traffic peak during Thanksgiving and Christmas.
The plans are expected to be announced in two to three weeks so that NCDOT can get comments and concerns from officials and citizens.
"We ask for your continued patience as we work through this process," officials wrote.