Tennessee's Department of Transportation announced Wendesday they have awarded a $150 million contract to repair I-440. Work will take about two years to complete, but construction will not require the total closure of the interstate.
Instead, reconstructing the highway will involve working around the clock, with the majority of construction happening at night. But two lanes will remain open during the morning and afternoon rushes, and officials say the plan will finish up around the same time as an alternative proposal to shut down sections of the highway.
The project will overhaul I-440 after years of deterioration and a temporary resurfacing earlier this year.
One question facing the state has been what to do with the original concrete surface. TDOT thought about replacing it completely but eventually settled on a less expensive idea.
"The option that was chosen by the low bidder was to pulverize or rubblize the conrete slabs that are there, and then go back and put asphalt on top of those," Will Reid, an assistant chief engineer at TDOT, said.
The project also includes new lighting installations, sound wall construction and laying fiber optic lines. Exit ramps at Murphy Road and Hillsboro Pike will also be improved.
Construction is expected conclude by August 2020. If the contractors don't meet the deadline, they will have to pay penalties. They will pay $100,000 every day for the 30 days of delays, and $400,000 per day afterward.