KNOXVILLE, Tennessee — Ten years ago the downtown Knoxville stretch of Interstate 40 reopened after one of the largest traffic projects in state history.

SmartFix40 shut down the stretch of interstate between James White Parkway and Hall of Fame Drive for 14 months. 

"Because we decided to close the road, it actually cut a couple of years off the project. The project actually finished ahead of schedule," explained Mark Nagi, a spokesman for TDOT. "We knew that traffic was only going to increase in that area. We knew we needed to widen the roadway. This project certainly made the commute a lot easier for folks." 

Police cars and motorcycles led the procession, with onlookers watching from overpasses, as the first cars drove across the new stretch of roadway. 

The extensive SmartFix40 traffic project added multiple bridges, ramps, lanes, and the Hall of Fame Interchange.