TDOT plans I-40 bridge overhaul after latest concrete problems - WSMV Channel 4

Update

TDOT plans I-40 bridge overhaul after latest concrete problems

Posted: Updated: Sep 12, 2013 05:04 AM
NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

One of Nashville's busiest stretches of interstate is back open Thursday after road crews had to make another round of emergency repairs for crumbling concrete.

For the third time in about a month, westbound lanes of Interstate 40 were reduced Wednesday evening at the bridge above Charlotte Avenue after concrete began falling to the road below.

The Tennessee Department of Transportation said crews working to patch the bridge finished the repairs about 5 a.m. Thursday.

No injuries or vehicle damage has been reported, and TDOT officials reiterated Thursday they believe the bridge remains structurally sound.

"We're looking at a bridge deck out there with 40-plus years of wear and tear on it," said TDOT assistant chief engineer David Layhew.

TDOT revealed Thursday it will now provide a better solution to the concrete issues until a massive re-building plan in 2015.

Next week, it will secure a contractor who will strip the bridge of its concrete deck and replace it in either October or November.

"We feel we need to get out there and do this fix now so that we're not inconveniencing the motoring public throughout the winter and summer of next year," Layhew said.

That work will mean a weekend closure of I-40 in the busy part of downtown - a headache that TDOT promises will be well worth it for the sake of safety.

"This bridge is perfectly safe," Layhew said. "I think, in this case, the problem is that these potholes have developed during rush-hour traffic, which brings it to the attention to the motoring public and everyone else."

Long-term, TDOT has a plan to fix that bridge over Charlotte Avenue and several others, and that $40 million project should happen in about a year-and-a-half.

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