Tom Charlier, USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee
Interstate highway travelers can expect to see plenty of traffic cones and detour signs this weekend as Memphis and West Tennessee seemingly turn into one big construction zone.
The Tennessee Department of Transportation plans three major closures or detours on Interstate 40 and I-240 to accommodate bridge and interchange projects.
The closures, all weather-dependent, are as follows:
- Beginning Friday at 8 p.m. and lasting through 6 a.m. Monday, I-40 at mile 31 in Fayette County will be reduced to one lane in each direction, with westbound traffic shifted into the eastbound lanes. A 60-mph speed limit and 16-foot width restriction will be enforced.
- From 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, eastbound and westbound traffic on I-40 will be detoured at Exit 80, the U.S. 45 Bypass in Jackson. Northbound and southbound lanes on the bypass also will be closed at the interchange.
- From 7 a.m. Saturday until 6 a.m. Monday, eastbound I-240 in Memphis will undergo lane closures between the Quince and Walnut Grove overpasses, although two lanes will remain open. The eastbound Poplar exit to eastbound I-240 and the I-240 eastbound exit to westbound Poplar will be closed.
The I-40 closures in Fayette County will allow a TDOT contractor to set beams over westbound lanes for a new interchange being constructed at Tennessee 196. The $15.9 million project is slated for completion around October 31.
The detours in Jackson will enable crews to erect steel beams for the U.S. 45 Bypass bridge being built over I-40.
In Memphis, the closures on I-240 will make way for the removal of a concrete barrier wall along the eastbound lanes. The work is part of a $54 million project replacing four aging bridges over the interstate.
The closures could be rescheduled in the event of bad weather, according to TDOT.