Frequently Asked Questions
TDOT has received questions and concerns about the topics below. We hope the information will provide a better understanding of the project and its challenges.
Will you please improve the design of the bridge?
In the spring of 2022, TDOT presented multiple designs to priority stakeholders and received significant feedback from only a couple of stakeholders. The final design is one that will complement new and old development rather than compete. The department’s goal was to create something that pays tribute to one of the most historical buildings in downtown Nashville (Union Station) while also complimenting the modernistic design of much of the city’s new developments.
For example, the arches in the railing are similar to the arches on the current bridge rail built in the 1940’s. The modern light poles and bridge rail lighting are consistent with lighting being placed throughout Nashville to promote safety and a cohesive look. The high railing over the railroad is a CSX safety requirement, but the department selected a product designed to maintain the most transparent view possible and still meet railroad requirements. The low railings on either side of the railroad are similar to the original 1900s bridge fencing.
Why is there not a dedicated bike/pedestrian lane?
Due to right-of-way constraints (the placement of the Grand Hyatt and Union Station), it is not physically possible to create an additional dedicated width for a bike/scooter lane. Simply put, there’s just not enough space. TDOT initially planned to maintain the roadway cross section (six travel lanes - three in each direction - and one center turn lane with 10-foot sidewalks on both sides). However, after discussions with stakeholders and concerned citizens, The decision was made to make the turn lane an 8-foot striped median, adding two feet of additional space to each sidewalk. TDOT believes maintaining all lanes of travel is the best option to ensure safe, free-flowing traffic for all modes of transportation.
The bridge is only about 700 feet of a much larger corridor. There are currently no bike lanes on either side of the bridge, which means, if added, the bridge would create about 700 feet of lanes that would immediately force cyclists onto a travel lane or sidewalk upon exiting either side.
Why maintain all lanes of traffic?
Traffic studies show that vehicular traffic will significantly increase over the next 20 years. The bridge is about 700 feet of a much larger corridor that is used as a transit route by MTA, a trucking route for downtown businesses to receive goods/services, and a primary route for vehicles and pedestrians into the downtown area.
Vehicular traffic must be able to turn off the bridge in order to access adjacent properties. The lanes were maintained in order to accommodate the growth of the turning queue not only for those properties but for 10th and 12th Avenue as well.
Lastly, the crosssection was maintained with future development in mind. We know Nashville is growing and evolving, and that's why the final design is a versatile one. Roads can always be re-striped, but once curbs are moved so far, they can't be changed without construction. This design leaves enough physical roadway space for any future transit options.
When is the 8-week closure of the bridge?
July 7, 2023 - September 1, 2023
What is the detour during the 8-week closure?
Traffic will be detoured onto Church Street and Demonbreun Street during the 8-week closure of the bridge. Businesses on Broadway between 10th Avenue and Rosa Parks Boulevard will be accessible via one-way traffic from Demonbreun Street and Rosa Parks Boulevard. That section of the closure is necessary for crews to set up and store large machinery and materials.