Work begins next week on Spur tunnel through Smokies

SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A highway construction project set to begin Jan. 7 will affect U.S. 441 traffic headed from Gatlinburg to Pigeon Forge in the Smoky Mountains.

National Park Service spokesman Bob Miller says one lane will be closed in the tunnel on the northbound side of the Spur -- a 4.5 mile section that runs between the two mountain gateway cities.

A contractor will make drainage improvements in the tunnel and install new energy-efficient lighting.

Miller says other work will stabilize an area where rock slides have been common since the road was built in the 1950s.

The final stage of work will be grinding of the existing pavement and repaving, which is expected to be done in March.

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Information from: The Mountain Press, http://www.themountainpress.com

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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