Crews Ready for Henley Bridge Closure

Friday, December 03, 2010 | 11:16 am
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Department of Transportation is encouraging motorists to plan their routes now for when the Henley Bridge in Knoxville closes for reconstruction in January 2011. Once the closure begins, motorists will need to use James White Parkway to reach downtown Knoxville, the University of Tennessee campus and South Knoxville.
In the next month, motorists will notice the contractor posting detour signs, installing two temporary traffic signals at the on and off ramps of James White Parkway and Sevierville Pike, and making other improvements to the official detour route including the widening of the on and off ramps at James White Parkway. The closure is scheduled to begin January 3, 2011.

TDOT Crews Stocked and Ready for Winter Weather

Thursday, December 02, 2010 | 03:57 pm
NASHVILLE – Winter weather is already here in some parts of Tennessee and the Tennessee Department of Transportation is stocked and ready to clear state roadways of ice and snow this season. TDOT crews will once again use a variety of tools to battle winter weather including salt, salt brine, beet juice, and potato juice. 
“Last year’s winter storms forced TDOT crews to use twice as much salt and three times as much salt brine as we normally use during a winter season to keep our roads clear of ice and snow,” said TDOT Commissioner Gerald Nicely. “After replenishing our supply our crews are ready to go to work keeping Tennesseans moving this winter season.”

Marion County Welcome Center and Rest Area Closed

Thursday, December 02, 2010 | 03:15 pm

Repairs Underway to Sewage System

Chattanooga, Tenn. –TDOT has temporarily closed the Welcome Center on I-24 West and the Rest Area on I-24 East at mile marker 160 near Nickajack Lake in Marion County because of problems with the facilities' sewage systems. TDOT maintenance and contract workers are repairing the system and the facilities will reopen as soon as possible. 

Landslide Closes One Lane on State Route 116 in Anderson County

Wednesday, December 01, 2010 | 02:06 pm
Northbound lane of New River Highway is washed away
Northbound lane of New River Highway is washed away
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Motorists need to be aware of a lane closure caused by a landslide. Tennessee Department of Transportation crews closed the northbound lane on State Route 116 also known as New River Highway at mile marker 9 in Anderson County after approximately 150 feet of the lane was washed away overnight. The slide area is less than a mile south of the county bridge that straddles Anderson and Campbell County. Travelers need to use extreme caution as flaggers direct traffic onto one lane during the assessment and repairs.

Bredesen Announces Enhancement Grant to Preserve Important Civil War Site

Wednesday, November 24, 2010 | 07:30 am
Photo of the Carter cotton gin building. Courtesy: Franklin's Charge
Photo of the Carter cotton gin building. Courtesy: Franklin's Charge
Funds to Help Secure Focal Point of the Battle of Franklin
NASHVILLE — Governor Phil Bredesen announced today that the state will provide an enhancement grant in the amount of $960,000 to assist with Phase I of the Preservation and Interpretation of the Carter Cotton Gin site at the Franklin Battlefield in Williamson County.
A rendering of plans to restore the Carter cotton gin site. Courtesy: Franklin's Charge
A rendering of plans to restore the Carter cotton gin site. Courtesy: Franklin's Charge

The grant funds will be used to acquire property along Columbia Pike near the national landmark Carter House at the site of the Carter cotton gin building in order to eventually restore the site and develop an educational park. The Carter cotton gin structure saw some of the fiercest fighting during the 1864 Battle of Franklin. Columbia Pike was a key thoroughfare for Federal troops moving north from Spring Hill towards Nashville and the Tennessee Historical Commission hopes to restore the Union trench lines and rebuild the Carter cotton gin building. The area around the Carter cotton gin building was a focal point of the Confederate attack during the fighting at Franklin which was a one of the most brutal battles of the entire Civil War.  The battle was a definitive point of conclusion for the Confederate efforts in Tennessee.

No Lane Closures on Tennessee Highways During the Thanksgiving Holiday

Thursday, November 18, 2010 | 07:00 am
TDOT Halts All Lane Closure Activity for Busy Holiday Travel Period
NASHVILLE – Thanksgiving travelers will enjoy a smooth drive through Tennessee again this year during the busy travel holiday. The Tennessee Department of Transportation is once again halting all lane closure activity on interstates and state highways in anticipation of higher traffic volumes across the state. All construction related lane closures will be stopped beginning at noon on Wednesday, November 24 until 6:00 a.m. Monday, November 29.

TDOT’s SmartFIX40 Project Wins Two National Communications Awards

Wednesday, November 17, 2010 | 12:23 pm
Massive I-40 Project Recognized as Best in Nation for Transportation Project Public Outreach
NASHVILLE - The Tennessee Department of Transportation’s SmartFIX40 project is being recognized with two national community outreach and communications awards. The National Partnership for Highway Quality recently selected SmartFIX40 for their national Gold Award for “Making a Difference – Public Communications.” In addition, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Subcommittee on Public Affairs recently selected SmartFIX40 as one of four Excel Award winners for best public outreach and communications work by a state department of transportation.
“Closing a major interstate is not an easy task and requires tremendous planning, and communications with citizens, stakeholders, travelers and commuters," said Governor Phil Bredesen. “The communications outreach for this project was absolutely crucial and I’m pleased TDOT is being honored for this work.”

TDOT, Tourism & TWRA Partner to Provide Fishing Access at Smith County Welcome Center

Tuesday, November 09, 2010 | 02:35 pm
New Parking Area at I-40 Welcome Center in Smith County Provides Anglers Access to Caney Fork River
NASHVILLE – Anglers now have new access to the Caney Fork River in Smith County thanks to a partnership between the Tennessee Department of Transportation, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. A new parking area and access trail to the Caney Fork River is now open at the I-40 Welcome Center in Smith County at mile marker 267. The Welcome Center can be reached by both eastbound and westbound traffic on I-40. The new access area was developed to provide safe, legal access to the popular river for fishing.

Bridge Repair Project Closes Lanes on State Route 35 in Sevier County

Monday, November 08, 2010 | 04:59 pm
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Motorists traveling on U.S. 411/ U.S. 441/ State Route 35 (West Main Street) in Sevierville over the west prong of the Little Pigeon River should be alert for lane closures and changed traffic conditions. Crews began shifting traffic Monday morning as phase one work is underway.
Traffic has been reduced to one lane in each direction, with a center turn lane, and shifted to the southbound side of the bridge as crews will begin setting portable concrete barrier rails and begin repairs to the northbound section of the bridge. Traffic will remain in this configuration through the completion of phase one.