Interstate 640 Reconstruction

Knox County

The project along Interstate 640, from the I-40 Interchange east of Knoxville to the I-40 Interchange west of Knoxville, consists of resurfacing or reconstructing the roadway for approximately 10 miles. The improvements will ehance the safety and mobility of the entire corridor.

Current Status: October 25, 2023

Bridge repair work scheduled for October 27 to October 30 has been postponed and will be rescheduled in the weeks to come.  

October 9, 2023

In June 2022, the Tennessee Department of Transportation began rehabilitation of the I-640 corridor between the North Broadway Interchange and the I-40 Interchange (east of downtown Knoxville).  The rubbilization efforts required extensive work to remove existing asphalt pavement layers and beak the underlying concrete layers into a gravel base.  Once rubbilization of the concrete was complete, crews began placing intermediate asphalt pavement layers. 

During winter of 2022, several of the bridges within the project limits began to show significant potholing, which prompted further investigation of the bridge decks for potential repair. The Department added repair work to the bridges within the corridor and the contractor has been coordinating with the railroad to gain proper access and approvals that will allow them to proceed.

Due to the added scope of work and weather limitations for both paving and striping, the contract completion date has been extended to August 31, 2024. There will be a milestone completion for returning traffic to its original configuration on intermediate pavement layer prior to the end of this year’s paving season. The contractor will then return in the Spring of 2024 to complete the final surface paving and permanent striping.  

Over the course of the next six weeks, the contractor will be performing bridge repair work as traffic runs in its current configuration. Once Phase 1 bridge work is complete and all intermediate pavement layers have been placed, there will be a traffic shift to allow the contractor access to the other half of the bridges. The contractor will complete Phase 2 bridge work and return traffic to its original configuration following its completion.  

Intermittent weekend lane closures to allow the contractor access to I-640 bridges over Rutledge Pike are tentatively scheduled for Friday, October 20 through Sunday, October 22 and Friday, October 27 through Sunday, October 29, weather permitting. We will have more information regarding these traffic impacts in the days to come.

Construction start:  July 2022

Estimated completion: August 2024

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History and Background

I-640 was designed and constructed in the late 1970s as an east-west loop around the city of Knoxville. Upon completion of the roadway in 1982, it linked I-40 with US 441, I-75/I-275, and other routes in the city, just in time for the World’s Fair.

Today, traffic counts along the interstate connector average between 66,000 and 87,000 vehicles per day. The existing roadway is three lanes in each direction and much of the existing road surface is in substandard condition and needs to be repaired or replaced. An extensive pavement project is needed for the six-lane facility.



Public Involvement and Engagement

Project Handout from July 2022  



Project Imagery & Visuals

Project Map

Video from September 2022

August 2022 Video

I-640 Resurfacing Project Rubblization Video



Key Project Milestones 

The proposed design calls for repair or replacement of the deteriorated pavement throughout the 10-mile corridor.

Due to the size of the corridor, the I-640 project has been divided into two smaller sections or phases.

Phase 1: I-640 between I-75/I-275 and I-40 (west of Knoxville) COMPLETED

  • Removed top layer of asphalt
  • Replaced with two layers of asphalt, including a binding layer

Phase 2: I-640 between I-40 (east of Knoxville) and I-75/I-275

  • Rubblize existing roadway surface
  • Use rubblized material for new roadway base.
  • Repave roadway

Project Contacts

Jason Sholtz (Project Manager)
TDOT Region 1

Mark Nagi (Media Contact)
TDOT Region 1 Community Relations Officer

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