Starting at approximately 10:00PM on Sunday, April 19, 2015 the current traffic pattern on SR 66 at the approaches of the I-40 interchange will be modified. All traffic will cross over Interstate 40 on the Northbound (East side) bridge, in order to prepare for bridge work on the Southbound (West Side) bridge. Traffic will stay in this pattern for approximately 1 week, Sunday, April 19th thru Thursday, April 23rd. Some time on or around April 23rd traffic will be put back on both bridges for approximately 1 week. Traffic will be shifted again on Sunday, May 3, 2015 to a similar pattern but with all traffic now on the Southbound (West side) Bridge while work is being performed on the Northbound (East side) Bridge.
The work on both bridges includes the removal of the top ¾” of the existing concrete bridge deck by hydrodemolition. Hydrodemolition is a process of using high-pressure water to scarify the concrete surface of the bridge deck to remove the concrete. Once the top ¾” of the deck is removed, crews will prepare to install a 1 ½” overlay of polymer modified concrete. This new surface material will require a combined wet and dry cure time of 24 hours (12 hours wet and 12 hours dry). Once the surface has cured for 24 hours and a compressive strength of 3000 psi is achieved, crews will be able stripe and turn traffic back across the bridge.
Motorist should be alert of these traffic pattern changes. The left most lane in the northbound direction of SR 66 will remain open to the crossover to allow access to West Dumplin Creek Road. Beyond this crossover this lane will be closed and traffic will merge to the right. There will be 2 lanes of traffic in the northbound direction and 1 lane for southbound traffic as motorist drive over the bridges. In the Northbound direction, the right most lane will remain open for traffic heading Eastbound toward Asheville/I-81. The I-40 Westbound on ramp (the loop ramp) will also remain open to traffic.
Traffic in the South bound direction will be reduced from 2 lanes to 1 lane. Traffic from the I-40 Westbound off ramp will have 1 lane open to traffic to go Southbound (toward Sevierville/Pigeon Forge) and a right only lane to allow traffic in the North bound direction.
Signs and message boards will be in place to help direct motorist as will drums and channelized striping. Motorists are alerted to use caution when driving in this work zone and allow extra time to commute during this period.