LITTLE ROCK (KTHV) - The countdown is on to July 19 at 9:00 a.m. when the Big Rock Interchange (I-430/I-630) in Little Rock will undergo another round of lane shifts. Motorists are being asked to alter their travel routine as workers prepare for seven traffic pattern changes on the I-430 lanes over a 20-day period. A combination of one and two of the I-430 lanes - northbound and southbound - will close during the lane shifts.
"We asked motorists to 'stay away for a day' earlier this summer, and the results were great," said Scott Bennett, Director of the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD). "Now the contractor needs 20 days of around-the-clock activities for this phase of work. Our main point is that drivers need to be prepared on July 19, and for the entire 20-day work period."
This phase of work includes the longest duration of lane shifts and the most significant impacts to motorists thus far. Message boards, detours and advisory speeds will be posted throughout the interchange area.
The most significant impact during this phase will affect drivers who travel I-430 South through the interchange area. Southbound motorists currently have three travel lanes under the Rodney Parham Road overpass, but that will be reduced to two lanes beginning Thursday morning. Because of the reduction of lanes on I-430, delays will likely develop for drivers that access I-430 South by way of the Rodney Parham Road on-ramp. Motorists who use that ramp regularly may want to consider alternate routes. This configuration will be in place for the entire 20-day period.
About halfway through the 20 days of construction, two of the loop ramps inside the interchange will close for approximately 10 days: the I-630 East to I-430 North ramp and the ramp from I-430 North to Financial Center Parkway. Drivers that normally use those ramps will be directed to the I-430/Shackleford Road interchange near the Arkansas Heart Hospital and Shackleford Crossing shopping area.
"This will be a challenging phase of work for the contractor and we really need the public's help for 20 days starting July 19," added Bennett. "It will be helpful and less frustrating for everyone - the traveling public and the workers on the job - if motorists who normally use this area will plan ahead and use an alternate route during this time."
For more information go to www.ArkansasHighways.com.