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Gov. Lee announces improvement projects for two major East Tennessee roads

Alcoa Highway in Blount County and a portion of Newport Highway are on the list of "critical transportation" projects, with construction set to begin next year.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Two major East Tennessee roads can expect construction work starting next year after Governor Bill Lee and the Tennessee Department of Transportation released an improvement plan for 2022-2024.

Improvement projects will start on a portion of Alcoa Highway in Blount County during fiscal year 2022. Improvements will also be made on Newport Highway, running between Sevier and Jefferson counties.

The plan features around $2.6 billion in total infrastructure investments, focusing on 68 individual projects in 24 counties across the state. Officials said 58 of those projects are located in economically distressed and at-risk counties. 

“Investing in infrastructure is an important part of driving economic opportunity throughout our state,” said Gov. Lee. “This funding, particularly for rural Tennessee, will help to keep Tennesseans safe and moving in the right direction.”

The plan focuses on repair and replacing bridges, with 21 bridge-related projects on the state highway system and 34 bridge projects planned on local roads.