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Rockslide Repair Work Begins on U.S. 441 in Sevier County

Monday, April 18, 2011 | 10:51am
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Department of Transportation will begin work tomorrow on a project to stabilize the slope, remove debris and repair damage caused by a recent rockslide on U.S. 441 (State Route 71) in Sevier County. The rockslide occurred on April 6, 2011 on U.S. 441 in Gatlinburg near State Route 73. 
On Friday, April 15, 2011, the emergency slide repair project was awarded to Charles Blalock and Sons, Inc. of Sevierville, TN for a total amount of $1,143,845.00. The pre-construction meeting was held today and, due to the amount of work to be performed, work will begin on the project tomorrow, April 19, 2011.
Crews will be installing traffic control and concrete barricades on U.S. 441 that will reduce the traffic to only one lane in each direction. Traffic will remain in this configuration while crews work to install a retaining wall, backfill the retaining wall, place graded solid rock on the slope above the wall, and install a catchment fence at the top of the wall. 
To safely accomplish this work, the contractor must reduce traffic to one lane of traffic in each direction.  One existing northbound lane will be shifted onto an existing southbound lane with the opposing traffic separated by traffic control devices. This will allow the contractor to utilize both existing northbound lanes during the construction. No lane closures will be allowed from 12:01 a.m. on May 27, 2011 to 12:01 a.m. on May 31, 2011 in anticipation of increased Memorial Day traffic. 
After Memorial Day weekend, if the work on the project has not been completed, the contractor will be allowed to re-install the traffic control plan as previously described and allowed to work from 12:01 a.m. Mondays through 6:00 a.m. Fridays. During this time, the contractor will maintain a continuous (24 hour/day), productive operation until the project is completed. The project does include incentives and disincentives to encourage the early completion of the work in this area, and all work is required to be completed by June 17, 2011.
Updated project information can be found on the TDOT SmartWay website at or you may call 5‑1‑1. You can also receive traffic alerts via TDOT’s multiple Twitter feeds, including statewide traffic tweets @TN511 or Knoxville area alerts @Knoxville511. Smart phone users can use the new TDOT SmartWay Mobile website at to access TDOT’s SmartWay cameras, messages displayed on overhead Dynamic Message Signs, and information on construction related lane closures and incidents on interstates and state routes.
As always, drivers are reminded to use all motorist information tools wisely and Know Before You Go!by checking travel conditions before leaving for their destination. Drivers should never tweet, text or talk on a cell phone while behind the wheel.
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