Manufacturers Road not affected by funding shortage

The roadwork at U.S. Highway 27 and Manufacturers Road is slightly ahead of schedule, with a completion date scheduled for February 2015, said Jennifer Flynn, spokeswoman for the Tennessee Department of Transportation.

“Overall, the entire project is now nearly 86 percent complete, with 77 percent of allowed time elapsed,” she said.

The contractor is finishing work on the bridge on U.S. 27 near Manufacturers Road and should be paving on the south end of the project within the next two weeks, said Flynn.

No more lane or exit closures will be needed on the project. The only thing that will change is that traffic will be shifted onto new pavement on the main line of U.S. 27.

The entrance ramp from Manufacturers Road to U.S. 27 North will be opened sometime in September after the traffic is shifted to the new alignment, she said.

“For the safety of the traveling public, we cannot open the ramp until after the traffic shift is made,” said Flynn.

The funding shortage in the federal Highway Trust Fund will not affect the current U.S. 27 project under construction.

“Because of the uncertainty concerning the future of the Highway Trust Fund, the Department took a conservative approach with the projects in this year’s three-year transportation improvement program released publicly in April 2014,” Flynn said, adding that the most recent program included no new construction starts and there were many projects throughout the state that did not move forward based on available funding. “Internally, the Department has reviewed projects currently funded and has decided to delay several new capacity-type projects. As we must continue to take care of the roadway system we have to the best of our ability, resurfacing or projects considered infrastructure maintenance are prioritized over the new capacity projects.”