One lane of Lamar Alexander Parkway will remain closed between Walland and Townsend due to continued landslide activity in the area.
Tennessee Department of Transportation spokesperson Mark Nagi says a traffic signal is being set up and a barrier rail will be installed on Friday.
“What we’re waiting for is for this weather pattern to cease for a couple of days.. and then our geo technical engineers will be better able to asses the site and will make decisions as to the next step to further stabilize that slope,” said Nagi, via a phone interview Thursday night.
One neighbor along the detour route, Old Walland Highway, says she’s already noticed traffic increasing since the rain caused multiple landslides.
“It’s harder to get in and out, if you go to the store and come back. You have to wait on the lines of traffic. We want everyone to be safe and take the safer route,” said Sharon Rudder.
Rudder says she’s tried to stay off of Lamar Alexander Parkway to avoid adding to any traffic.
“I’m glad they’re keeping a good eye on it unfrotunately, most of it is going to depend on what the weather does with the rain washing it away,” said Rudder.
Due to continual slides, @myTDOT will close one lane on SR 73 (Lamar Alexander Parkway) between Walland and Townsend. A traffic signal is being setup now and barrier rail will be set up tomorrow. We will continue to monitor this roadway 24/7. pic.twitter.com/X8MbkZxgTP— Mark Nagi (@MarkNagiTDOT) February 21, 2019
Lamar Alexander Parkway had been subject to several closures earlier this week due to heavy rains. Other roads throughout East Tennessee have been forced to close due to rain-induced landslides.
Nagi says crews will be monitoring the area 24-7.