UPDATE: Road closures block Broad Street near Lookout Mountain
Be prepared for detours if you are traveling through the Lookout Mountain area. The intersection of Broad Street and St. Elmo Avenue are closed for construction.
UPDATE: This road closure will start on Friday, June 2.
Here is the main alternate route you can take: If you are traveling to downtown Chattanooga take Scenic Highway, turn left on Old Wauhatchie Pike and Cummings Highway to Browns Ferry Road. From there you can take I-24 East.
TDOT crews will be making repairs to the stone wall on Cummings Highway this summer, which may cause additional delays.
PREVIOUS STORY: Be prepared for detours if you are traveling through the Lookout Mountain area. The intersection of Broad Street and St. Elmo Avenue is closed for construction. It is the last part of a $17 million dollar multi phase project.
The Chattanooga Public Works Department said the construction isn't expected to affect to Ruby Falls or Rock City.
A customer at Gordons Cleaners ask employee, Wanda Harp, how access is going to be with the new road closures. Wanda Harp replied that she didn’t know yet, and they have to wait and see what the outcome will be.
It's a daily conversation employees at Gordons Cleaners have to explain to customers. “We don't see a whole lot; we don't know a whole lot. They don't tell us anything, we have to hear it through the grapevine,” said Wanda Harp.
Chattanooga Public Works is finishing a yearlong project on Broad Street. Crews are replacing a 90 year old drainage system to prevent flooding in St. Elmo.
“There is one pipe that we know has already collapsed. There was an emergency repair done in 2005 to get that pipe back into good shape. Another pipe has since collapsed in another location. The pipes are just deteriorated,” said Chattanooga Public Works Administrator, Justin Holland.
Drivers can expect road closures at the base of Lookout Mountain. They will need to follow detour signs throughout the area. “We got a really good traffic plan to navigate traffic. We also encourage residents from Lookout Mountain to avoid that area which would be a natural commute through town. With the intersection of Tennessee Avenue.”
Local businesses agree there's never a good time for road closures. “Nobody is going to know how to get in or how to get out because up and down the mountain is going to be blocked. That is where the majority of my business is from,” said Harp.
But crews said they did their best not to interrupt the summer tourism season. “We've worked closely with Rock City and Ruby Falls. This is the opportune time. We coordinated to avoid Christmas time, which is their busier time of the year,” said Holland.
Local business owners tell Channel 3 they will be meeting with city engineers Tuesday evening to discuss the impact. The intersection is expected to open in August.