The concrete company that came to Atlanta’s rescue when I-85 collapsed

Mason Lampton, chief executive of Standard Concrete Products, explains how highway girders in the I-85 repair project were made at the company’s Atlanta location. It produced the girders at a record pace to get the job done. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

Credit: Hyosub Shin

Credit: Hyosub Shin

Until those 61 beams arrived at the site of the collapse, the repairs couldn’t happen.

More than 80,000 pounds each, those girders were not exactly going to come flying off some assembly line in China in a few hours, but without them, I-85 would remain closed.

Behind the rapid repair of the I-85 bridge was a subcontractor in west Atlanta who made incredibly heavy girders -- and produced them at a record pace to get the job done.

It was an emergency rush order that came to Standard Concrete Products in Atlanta the evening of March 30, the dark smoke still rising, the flames still visible, the dark smoke still rising.

The phone call from the Georgia Department of Transportation.

“They called us while the bridge was still on fire,” Mason Lampton, Standard’s chief executive, said as he stood in the rain one morning this week, watching his workers burn through the steel to separate a trio of nearly finished girders.

>> For the full story of how the hard-working, family-owned concrete company saved Atlanta’s commute, click here.


AJC Business reporter Michael E. Kanell keeps you updated on the latest news about jobs, housing and consumer issues in metro Atlanta and beyond. You'll find more on, including these stories:

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