TDOT Shares New I-55 Bridge Design Plans

May 28, 2024
The bridge will be closed in June for repair work

Earlier this month, the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) shared updated plans for a new Interstate 55 bridge connecting Memphis to Arkansas. The new potential design features two high arches and would replace the existing Memphis-Arkansas Bridge that runs parallel to Big River Crossing. 

The concept design will feature a 10-lane bridge (three traffic lanes each side along with two shoulder lanes) compared to the existing four-lane bridge.  

Three different concepts were presented with minor changes between the three including the number of towers and the gap between spans under the bridge for boats traveling underneath. 

TDOT announced in December that it would be seeking a grant to replace the 75-year-old bridge. The estimated cost for the new bridge will be between $800 million and $1 billion with funding being provided through the state’s Transportation Modernization Act. 

The bridge supports approximately 46,000 vehicles daily, approximately 35% of that vehicular traffic is freight. Those figures will increase to 64,000 daily vehicles by 2050, according to TDOT data. The main goals for the new bridge, aside from modernization, are to improve safety, seismic resiliency, and connectivity. 

TDOT said that in June, the I-55 Bridge will close from 8 p.m. on June 9 through 8 p.m. June 23. TDOT crews will be doing hydro-demolition and deck repair work on the bridge.


Source: WANT Memphis, Commercial Appeal Memphis 

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