CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A local Charlotte company will finish the long-awaited last leg of Interstate 485.
Blythe Construction was awarded the contract with the State Department of Transportation that was signed Thursday in Charlotte.
Gov. Bev Perdue said Blythe was the lowest of four bids, coming in at $139.5 million -- about $25 million less than the original projected cost for the project.
"This saves time. It saves taxpayers money and t creates jobs. It solves a tremendous transportation issue for you," said Perdue.
Secretary of Transportation Gene Conti said Blythe also agreed that the company would do the job without getting paid up front.
"What the company is doing is agreeing to do the work in four and a half years and accept payment over five and a half years. So they are self-financing, if you will," Conti said.
Mayor Anthony Foxx pointed out that the original construction schedule called for the last leg from N.C. 115 to I-85 to be started in 2015. Now, the Mayor said, "It will be done before it was suppose to get started."
Blythe Construction has done work on 485 in the past, winning the bid for a section that was built several years ago. The company president, Bill Capehart said there would not be the same kind of delays and cost overruns that have plagued the project in the past.
"We've done numerous design/build jobs in this state, all on time and within the state's budget, and we feel confident this won't be any different," said Capehart.
State Sen. Malcolm Graham, D-Charlotte, said getting the 485 loop closed was long overdue.
"It means that now the largest city in the Carolinas will have an urban loop in 2015," Graham said.
The governor said she hoped work would begin by the end of the year.