HomeNewsI-40 widening enters final phase at Exit 79

I-40 widening enters final phase at Exit 79

The expansion of Interstate 40 to six lanes through Jackson has been an ongoing process since 2017.

The project has entered its final phase with work going on at Exit 79 at Hollywood Drive.

“All work east of Exit 79 has been completed,” said Nichole Lawrence, communications specialist for Tennessee Department of Transportation for West Tennessee. “The work at Exit 83 and Campbell Street and Old Medina Road finished exactly one day ahead of schedule, and that was the second of three portions of this project and the longest with it beginning in 2020.”

The first portion was Exits 80 and 82 that not only widened the highway but also transformed the exits at the Highway 45 Bypass and Highland Avenue.

The third portion, which starts just west of Exit 79 up to the exit itself, officially began in late summer and is set to be completed by May of 2024.

Dement Construction is the company handling the job that costs a little more than $38 million.

Construction work stops for holidays

Road construction won’t delay travelers during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) is once again halting all lane closure activity on interstates and state highways in anticipation of higher traffic volumes across the state. No temporary lane closures will be allowed for construction on Tennessee roadways beginning at 6 a.m. Friday through 6 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 2, 2023. 

AAA expects an estimated 2.6 million Tennesseans to travel between Dec. 23 and Jan. 2 with most of them driving.

“With so many people expected to travel Tennessee roadways during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, keeping traffic moving and getting everyone to their destinations safely is our top priority,” said TDOT Commissioner Butch Eley. “As always, please wear your seatbelt, reduce your speed, avoid distractions, and never drink and drive.”

Except for a few long-term closures that must remain for safety, all construction-related closures will be suspended during the holiday period.  Workers may still be on-site in some construction zones.  Drivers should obey all posted speed limits, particularly in construction areas.  Slower speeds are necessary in work zones due to the temporary layout of the roadway and will be enforced.  Drivers convicted of speeding through work zones where workers are present face a fine of $250 to $500, plus court fees and possibly increased insurance premiums. 

Brandon Shields, brandon@jacksonpost.news

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