Gay Street Bridge Closed for Re-striping

Communications Director

Eric Vreeland
evreeland@knoxvilletn.gov
(865) 215-3480

400 Main St., Room 654A
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Gay Street Bridge Closed for Re-striping

Posted: 12/28/2010
The Gay Street Bridge will be closed from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Wednesday, December 29, for a re-striping that will convert it from the present two-lane configuration into three lanes.

The new arrangement will feature a traffic lane in each direction with a two-way turn lane in the middle. The Gay Street Bridge currently includes a traffic lane going in each direction with a turn lane at each end of the bridge - so it's wide enough to be three lanes along its entire length.

The City of Knoxville is doing the re-striping to prepare for an expected increase in traffic on the bridge when the nearby Henley Bridge closes for reconstruction on the morning of January 3, 2011. The Henley Bridge, which carries roughly 38,000 vehicles a day, will be closed for 24-30 months.

The city's engineering department made the decision to go to three lanes to improve emergency responders' access to South Knoxville while the Henley Bridge is closed. A third lane also allows additional space for traffic at both ends of the bridge.

The Tennessee Department of Transportation anticipates that most drivers will use the South Knoxville Bridge, which is officially the James White Parkway, to cross the Tennessee River but there will be an increase in traffic along the Gay Street Bridge as well.

The city's engineering department had planned to do the re-striping earlier but it's best to do the work when the temperature is 45 degrees or warmer, something that has been rare in recent days.