Big Changes Coming To I-440 In Nashville

Posted at 8:04 PM, Feb 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-16 17:01:20-05

The winter season has been known as the toughest on roads in Middle Tennessee, and few roads have seen the impact of the winter weather more than I-440 in Nashville. 

The roadway is made of concrete, unlike most of the asphalt interstates in the Nashville area, and when potholes form, they're filled with asphalt, which is less effective on concrete roads than asphalt roads. 

In 2009, the roadway was grooved due to issues with water making the interstate slick. Those grooves have likely contributed to the deterioration of the roadway, but thanks to the Improve Act, I-440 will see a complete makeover. 

"It's just past its useful life," Kathryn Schulte, community relations officer for TDOT, said. "It's been about 30 years. That concrete is just ready to go." 

The plan is for the road to be changed from a concrete roadway to an asphalt one, and for the roadway to be expanded to three lanes in each direction instead of two. 

The project could likely cost in the ballpark of $100,000,000, and five different teams have currently been putting together proposals that will be submitted to TDOT with a decision on which project to go with likely coming in the summer. 

Until the major fixes can be made to make the road more appealing to drivers, TDOT has planned to continue to fix potholes and other issues where they can. 

"Our crews have been out there multiple times a week, sometimes every day, sometimes all weekend, patching potholes on 440," Schulte said. "We know it's not permanent. We know it's just a Band-Aid, but that's basically what we have to do until we can get all that deteriorated concrete removed." 

TDOT officials said they'll be looking closely at each bid, and that the length and cost of the project will be a major contributing factor to their choice.