NELSON COUNTY, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- A major project to rehabilitate a Nelson County bridge is getting underway.

The Virginia Department of Transportation says Highway 60 will be reduced to one lane on the bridge over the James River for more than a year.

VDOT says the existing structure, which was built in 1965, is currently in fair condition, but considering the age and types of the structure, the most cost-effective solution is to rehabilitate the bridge before it deteriorates to poor condition.

A spokesperson for the Lynchburg District says the existing concrete deck has been identified as a priority for replacement in order to restore the bridge to good condition.

With proper maintenance, the service life of this new deck is expected to be about 75 years.

The project will also include joint eliminations at the abutments and three piers, concrete substructure repair, 20 bearing replacements, and cleaning and repainting of the structural steel.

Additionally, there will be some work on either side of the bridge.

VDOT says this work will also be done within the existing right of way, using staged construction.

Temporary signals will be put in place in each direction during the project and one lane of traffic will be maintained.

The project is expected to be completed by July 2024.