I-24 Final Weekend Closure Held For Bridge Work

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Interstate 24 is set to be shut down in downtown Nashville Friday evening for an ongoing construction project.

It's the last of four weekends for the I-24 closure that spans the entire east loop, between I-40 and I-65.

The project must be completed before work can begin on the I-440-loop next summer, with I-40 as the major detour.

If you drive on Spring Street near I-24 you can see TDOT is ready to work. All four corners of the intersection are covered with cones, beams and other construction equipment.

"It's a goal, it's an accomplishment, I'm glad were doing it," said TDOT I-24 Accelerated Bridge Construction Project Manager Red Jordan.

Jordan says his team and their partners are ready to take on the final and biggest section of the project, replacing the 50-year old bridges over Oldham St and Spring St in just four weekends.

"It will be a smoother ride," Jordan said, "once we get done with the bridge work here we'll resurface from here all the way to the 40-65 junction."

The timing of this project is in stark contrast to the three years it could take without using the fast-fix weekend approach.

"Nobody wants to be running through here on (just) two to three lanes," Jordan said, referencing the alternative option of continuing traffic during construction,"it gets congested in the afternoons and the mornings anyway."

With I-24 closed between I-65 and I-40 drivers will need to take the west loop around as a detour.
If you live in East Nashville, use Shelby Ave or Main St to get in and out.  

Jordan says 100 workers will be on site, working at least 12-hour shifts, racing to get the job done before Monday morning rush hour.

They've run into some obstacles in the first three weekends of work.

"We had the hurricane come through that delayed us one weekend, now we have a cold spell," he said. 

Not to mention around 70 visits from the nearby train.

"We totally have to stop cause we can't be swinging anything over the train," Jordan said, pointing out the tracks that go under the Oldham St. bridge.

But don't question their deadline. These guys know weight of the city rests on these bridges.

"Yeah were gonna get it done!" Jordan exclaimed, "we've opened early every weekend and so we're hoping this weekend is no different."

I-24 is slated to re-open Monday morning by 6 a.m. And while the weekend closures are done after this, the project is not. 

There are several final touches including an additional 1.25 inches of smooth asphalt to lay as a top layer. 

Contractors will finish that at night to avoid stopping traffic in the spring.

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