I-24 Ridge Cut Coming Around
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WRCB-TV) - No doubt you have noticed work and warning signs along Interstate 24 between mile markers 177 and 183. That 6-mile stretch includes "the ridge cut," the 90 degree turn that takes the lanes across, in front of and around Missionary Ridge. It is a surface that has been plagued with potholes for many years.
Well, the new pavement is down. It is an asphalt-polymer mix designed for high traffic areas. That is an important note since about 110,000 vehicles motor through the Scenic City via I-24 on any given day.
This has been a bear of a project for Highways, Inc. out of Brentwood. With the traffic load, repairs to the underlying concrete and to some 16 bridges along the way, TDOT's Jennifer Flynn jokingly admitted she had hoped she would have been retired before they dug into this project.
Workers will be on-site again 10 PM to 5 AM Friday, Saturday and Sunday and some lanes may once again be closed. But the contractors can only restrict traffic to one lane either way during these overnight hours. The completion date is set for November 30th, but this $5.3 million project should be finished by mid-September.
Next for TDOT and the Tennessee Valley, straightening out and improving Highway 27 along both sides of the river. At $75 million, this will be the most expensive undertaking ever in the 24 county area of Region 2. Bids go out in October. Dirt may begin to move by the end of this year. Construction is expected to last some 3 years.