TDOT says I-40 construction will continue until next summer

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- If you have to get there fast, you might want to avoid Interstate 40 in East Memphis.

"Coming straight through is usually a little harder than coming around on 40. So usually I take Summer Avenue if there is a lot of back up down here," said Kyle Cavender, who lives in Lakeland.

TDOT said the Canada Road exit at I-40  will be under construction until  Summer  2017.

"The configuration along there is kinda outdated and we needed to improve the flow of traffic and work with the congestion and make those ramps safer and keep the capacity flowing," said Nichole Lawrence, TDOT Community Relations.

Just this week construction zone crashes brought traffic to a stand-still during the morning rush.

Now TDOT said it may put out reflectors to alert drivers at Canada Road.

"We are adjusting our messaging on our signs to help with directions and let people know there is a traffic shift ahead," said Lawrence.

Add in the I-40/240 flyover and you have two major construction projects within a few miles of each other.

"Too much congestion. Lanes aren't wide enough. You are scared to death you are gonna hit somebody," said Sharon Cunningham, who was driving on I-40 headed to Nashville Friday.

TDOT said relief will come once the extra lane on the flyover opens up.

"Once that Wolf River Bridge is finalized and complete later on in the late Fall or early Winter, then we can open up those additional lanes on the flyover," said Lawrence.

Right now that means more delays.

The I-40 East Ramp off Whitten Road and all Appling Road exits will be closed part of the weekend and expect nightly lane closures next week for paving on I-40.

TDOT said the I-40 at I-240 construction project is its largest project in this part of the state, with a price tag of $110 million. All work is expected to be finished by next summer.

Closures:

  • Friday, September 16, 8:00 p.m. through Saturday, September 17, 8:00 p.m.: All ramps from I-40 West to Germantown Road will be CLOSED for milling and paving of shoulders. Each ramp will be opened when paving operations are completed.
  • Saturday, September 17, 6:00 a. m. through Sunday, September 18, 8:00 p. m.: I-40 East off-ramp to Whitten Road will be CLOSED for full-depth saw-cutting and concrete replacement.
  • Saturday, September 17, 1:00 p. m. through Sunday, September 18, 6:00 p. m.: All ramp shoulders from I-40 West at Appling Road will be CLOSED for milling and paving operations. Ramps will remain open during shoulder closures.
  • Monday, September 19 & Tuesday, September 20, 8:00 p. m.-5:00 a. m.: I-40 West will have nightly lane closures, from Davies Plantation at log mile-22.98 to Sycamore View at log mile15.54, for paving operations.