KNOXVILLE, TENN. — TDOT finished bridge work on I-40 over the weekend, wrapping up a project that caused major headaches for drivers over several weekends.
While that bridge work is now complete, the job isn't completely done.
TDOT spokesperson Mark Nagi says crews will now focus on paving in that same area, on I-40 between West Hills and I-640, during the overnight hours.
That work is dependent on weather, but be prepared for some delays if traveling in the late evening or overnight hours.
Nagi says they hope to have all of the resurfacing done in that area by the first week of May.
Original story- April 12, 2018
The Tennessee Department of Transportation will wrap up road work on Interstate 40 the weekend of Friday, April 13, weather permitting. For Knoxville drivers, those major traffic delays will be finally coming to an end.
TDOT spokesperson Mark Nagi said crews are expected to finish up the bridge repair work on I-40 between the West Hills exit and I-640 interchange as long as weather allows. Crews will resume their work starting at 8 p.m. on Friday on both I-40E/W. Nagi said two lanes will remain open in each direction in West Knoxville to allow for some traffic flow. However, drivers should expect some delays while out on the roads and plan to take different routes if possible.
"We found on these bridges there's a lot of concrete that needs to be replaced," TDOT spokesperson Mark Nagi said. "So basically, what crews are doing is taking out the bad concrete, putting in new concrete and you have to have time for the concrete to cure."
Cars can't drive over the the concrete until it's dry, Nagi added. TDOT will eventually work on resurfacing the area, but that can be done overnight.
The work began weeks ago, and caused major traffic delays around the area as TDOT reduced traffic to both the eastbound and westbound sides of the interstate to two lanes. The work also jammed up traffic on Kingston Pike and Middlebrook Pike, as well as nearby outlying roads where people tried to bypass the traffic.
Nagi recommended people wanting to bypass traffic to consider taking Alcoa Highway and Pellissippi Parkway, which are more readily capable of handling the higher traffic volume and would likely be faster than sitting in traffic -- even with the lengthy detour.
Work did not happen on Easter weekend between March 30 and April 2. TDOT said the schedule could change depending on local weather conditions. Nagi said they hoped to complete the work this weekend.
"We understand folks are frustrated, and we know that there are significant delays," Nagi said. "We just ask for everyone's patience as this important work continues."
TDOT is also doing work on a section of I-40 in Cocke County.