Memphis motorists prepare for I-240 traffic trouble

Memphis motorists should prepare for traffic headaches this weekend, according to Tennessee Department of Transportation Officials.

Drivers have been dealing with construction near I-240 and Walnut Grove Road for more than a year.  This weekend, the project will take a major step forward with the demotion of a bridge spanning the highway.

During the demolition, I-240 will be closed in both directions in 30 minute intervals while crews remove portions of the bridge.  When an interval is complete, the interstate will be opened to clear traffic.

TDOT spokesperson Pamela Marshall encouraged motorists to avoid the area if possible.  "Even when we re-open the interstate, it's going to take at least another hour for traffic to clear," she said.  "Don't come.  Go somewhere else.  Use an alternate route."

Construction is scheduled to begin at 6:00 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.  Marshall recommended taking the "long way" by using the north leg of I-240, or surface roads like White Station or Poplar Avenue, to get around the construction.

Click here for maps of possible alternate routes, provided by the Tennessee Department of Transportation.