A public meeting to discuss improvements to the Wilcox Tunnel will be held on Thursday, Nov. 15, from 6:30-8 p.m.
"The existing two-lane Wilcox tunnel is in need of major rehabilitation," said Richard Beeland of the mayor's office. "It does not meet current safety standards and prohibits bus, bicycle, and pedestrian movements in this corridor. Also, firefighting equipment cannot currently use the tunnel because of the limited vertical clearances. Many motorist avoid the tunnel because of its condition, placing an extra burden on other transportation routes."
The Wilcox Tunnel Improvement Project proposes construction of a new, two-lane eastbound tunnel and rehabilitation to the existing tunnel which will be converted to a one-lane facility in the westbound direction. Improvements will also be made to the roadways approaching the tunnel from each direction.
The tunnel project begins at the intersection of North Chamberlain Avenue and Wilcox Boulevard and ends at the intersection of Greenwood Road and Wilcox Boulevard. The project length is 0.85 mile. This project will provide capacity and safety in the tunnel and allow access by emergency vehicles, CARTA buses, pedestrians, and bicyclists.
The meeting agenda topics include the project's history (why this project, why now), alternatives for improvements (construction of new tunnel, rehab of existing tunnel), environmental studies, geology, preferred alternatives and questions and answers.
The meeting will be held at Eastdale Community Center, 1312 Moss Dr. For additional information contact Mark Heinzer, senior engineer with the city of Chattanooga, at Heinzer_m@chattanooga.gov or 643-6023.