Interstate 26 Pinnacle Road Bridge Repair

Unicoi County


The planned project along Interstate 26 consists of bridge repair work over Pinnacle Road (White Road) and North Indian Creek near mile marker 33, just north of Exit 34 (Tinker Road), in Unicoi County.

Purpose and Need

I-26 is primarily an east-west route that begins in the Tri-Cities region of Tennessee. The section in Unicoi County, also known as James H Quillen Parkway, extends approximately 26 miles, covering roughly the entire length of the county before entering North Carolina.

The I-26 bridge over Pinnacle Road and North Indian Creek was built in 1985. The structure is showing signs of deterioration and need for repairs, as is typical of concrete bridge surfaces over time. The planned repairs will help maintain the structural integrity of the bridge, while also improving the safety of the bridge using current design standards.


The existing I-26 bridge over Pinnacle Road and North Indian Creek is a prestressed concrete structure. Planned work will include concrete repairs and epoxy overlay on the bridge deck, as well as repainting of the bridge. The approach pavement and concrete transition slabs on either end of the structure will be replaced to provide a smoother transition between the bridge and the roadway. The outside and inside shoulders will also be reconstructed, and guardrail and cable barrier rail will be repaired or replaced.

Additionally, portions of asphalt will be repaved and pavement markings will be replaced as needed.

All major work will be completed within approximately 1700 feet of the bridge to the north (toward Johnson City) and 2500 feet to the south (toward Erwin).


Due to the nature of the work, I-26 will be reduced to one lane in each direction for much of the project. This will allow crews to safely move equipment through the work zone and complete the necessary repairs. All lane closures will be posted along the route. Motorists should be aware of changing road conditions, as well as traffic entering/exiting the work zone at Exit 34 (Tinker Road), when traveling through the project area.

Pinnacle Road (underneath the interstate) will remain open; however, motorists should use caution when traveling under the bridge.