Update on Little Rock's Big Rock Interchange progress

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - Good news about a road project that has caused a lot of headaches for many drivers. Construction on The Big Rock Interchange is about 75 percent complete.

All the sleet and snow from this winter has not delayed construction at the I-430 and I-630 interchange. That is according to a spokesperson with the Arkansas Highway Department. The project is still on schedule.

"Well it is kind of just part of the scenery now," said James Hawkins.

James Hawkins doesn't stare out his window at work every day, but when he does, he notices the progress.

"They have done a lot of work at night," said Hawkins. "On the weekends."

Hawkins has been working in a building nearby the construction for the last 25 years. He deals with the roadwork multiple times a day.

"Pretty awful in both the mornings and the afternoons," said Hawkins.

Arkansas Highway Transportation Department Spokesman Danny Straessle says drivers will only have to deal with about another year of this. The project is still on schedule to be complete by the summer of 2015.

"We should have the Shackleford overpass completed by the end of this year," said Straessle.

Interstate 630 is now wider on the west end of the interchange, and flyover ramps are up. Straessle says they are not going to open up any of the completed sections until the whole project is complete.

"It all works together," said Straessle. "It is a very delicate choreography, and it will not function without a certain piece."

Straessle says drivers will not have to deal with anymore reconfigurations.

"The pattern right now is what it is going to be like until the project is done," said Straessle.

And for the nearly 100,000 vehicles that pass near here daily, AHTD is looking forward to this being a smoother ride.

"The 430/630 interchange is the busiest intersection we have in the state as far as interstates go and when it is all said and done we are looking at an improved facility and an easier way to get from point A to point B," said Straessle.

This project started in January 2009. It is made up of three phases. Right now, construction is in the last phase.

The project is costing $125 million.


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