For the next eight months, drivers can expect congestion near Camp Jordan. Construction began Friday for the exit one reconfiguration project.

The seven million dollar project will help transform the East Ridge area, making it safer for drivers.

The project will combine the current 75 Northbound exits 1A and 1B into a single exit. It will allow drivers to safely turn East or West on Ringgold Road.

A decade old idea is finally happening.  A new exit is expected to improve safety and traffic flow on Interstate 75. “I think people will be amazed,” said The City of East Ridge Mayor Brent Lambert.

On Friday, orange cones and construction workers could be found near Camp Jordan. It's the first phase of a long awaited expansion project for the East Ridge area. “A lot of economic development will take place as a result of this project. Up the capacity in terms of traffic at exit 1. Make access to Camp Jordan Parkway much easier, make Camp Jordan Park much easier.”

Once drivers get off the new exit 1, instead of making a right going East on Ringgold Road. They will come straight to a traffic light onto Camp Jordan Parkway.

“So instead of going East and doing a turn around like it has been done for the past decade, you'll now come to a traffic signal, and go straight into the Bass Pro Shop as well as Camp Jordan,” said East Ridge City Manager Scott Miller.

Miller said it will open up the area near the Bass Pro Shop, allowing even more businesses to build and existing entities to grow. “You got acres down there looking for expansion. Several hundred thousand square feet. Retail hopefully coming in, four or five more restaurants under construction right now. A 90 room hotel going in.”

He said the multimillion-dollar project is expected to make a huge difference for the future of East Ridge. “It is going to be a plus. Vehicles will be able to get in and out a lot quicker. A lot faster, a lot safer, and more pleasing I think it will be overall than what is there now.”

The project is expected to be complete in May of 2018.