Summertime travel has increased and congestion through the I-40 (Prairie County) work zone has become heavy, according to the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD). This traffic pattern is expected to continue throughout the summer. Transportation officials are urging motorists to "Know the REDZones" before they travel and to consider using alternate routes, such as highway 70, before traveling I-40 between Little Rock and West Memphis.
The $56 million Interstate project includes rehabilitation of existing westbound and eastbound I-40 lanes through a 10-mile section located near the White River bridge. During peak driving times, over 40,000 vehicles travel this area each day, according to highway officials. Estimated completion for construction is summer 2013.
"We want motorists to be aware that the construction zone is there and to plan accordingly," said Scott Bennett, AHTD Director. "Whether a driver chooses to stay on I-40 or use an alternate route, it's going to take longer to travel between North Little Rock and West Memphis. Be aware of that, and factor it into your travel plans."
Traffic control personnel and a Motorist Assistance Program (MAP) vehicle are on site 24/7. Real time information of incidents by way of message boards and highway advisory radio channels are provided, and the MAP team assists with minor vehicle incidents. But AHTD officials remind travelers that these services are provided only inside the work zone.
Know the REDZones is an AHTD
public awareness campaign that highlights highway construction projects with
significantly reduced capacity. Alternate routes, travel tips and project
information can be found under the REDZones
icon on the AHTD web page at www.ArkansasHighways.com.