(Bartlett, TN) Construction will start next week on the largest TDOT project ever in the state.
The I-40 and I-240 interchange will be overhauled.
The $109 million undertaking will widen Sam Cooper by one lane each way.
I-240 from Walnut Grove to the interchange and from the interchange to Covington Pike will also be widened.
The portions of I-40 on the interchange will become two lanes.
"Sam Cooper was supposed to be I-40 so when that was stopped, and I think a lot of us are glad it was stopped because of Overton park and the Zoo, now this is the culmination of that," TDOT Project Engineer Ian Engstrom said.
Drivers wanting information about the project met with TDOT engineers Tuesday night.
"What time are we going to have to get up to get to work?" Shelby County driver Patti Ramsey asked."We need wider roads more roads but I don't know if there is ever going to be a good time to do this."
Engineers promised 240 will never be less than three lanes, and Sam Cooper will lose one lane during construction.
Most work will be done in daylight hours.
"I'm very excited I think it's good for Shelby County," driver Jerry Horne said."I'm sure it's going to be worth it in the end. It's going to be a long haul."
A long haul with a long list of expectations of making this area less congested for years to come.
Right now about 200,000 vehicles travel that interchange each day.
The project is expected to be completed by 2017.
If you missed Tuesday's information session, another will be held on Monday October 14, 2013 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Oak Grove M.B. Church at 7289 Highway 64 in Bartlett.