Highway 66 work in Sevierville extended to April 2015
Traffic congestion from construction on Highway 66 may not be resolved anytime soon, as the estimated completion date for construction has been extended to April 3, 2015.
Engineer Jeremiah Davis said that the estimated completion date, which was originally Oct. 31, 2014, had to be extended due to unforseen circumstances, and that it could be extended once more before the end of the project.
"We were working to replace pipe that was not accounted for in our original plans," Davis said. "We're anticipating that we may have to extend the estimated completion date again."
Crews are making progress in preparing to pave new northbound lanes from Boyds Creek Highway to the bridge, and representatives at AMEC Environment and Infrastructure Inc. anticipate traffic shifting to the new outside lanes in this section after the start of next year.
Short traffic stops should be expected daily throughout the project as crews move equipment and materials in and out of the work zone. A higher volume of traffic coming through could slow traffic as well. Davis said he doesn't believe the traffic will be much worse than usual, however.
"We'll maintain two lanes going through, and I wouldn't expect any lane closures," Davis said. "Traffic will be heavier than normal, definitely, because of people coming to do shopping. Primarily it's weekend traffic picking up, that seems to be what I see a lot."
Davis added that work will continue normally through the Christmas holidays. "It will be just like how it is on weekends now, you shouldn't notice any difference," Davis said.
Work on storm drain installation and utility relocation also continues throughout the project, and electric relocations are nearly complete. Drivers are urged to use extreme caution and reduce speed when driving through the work zone.