TDOT officials have been in talks with city and River City Company officials about getting the $80 million U.S. 27 project downtown back on track.
Commissioner John Schroer and his staff met with Mayor Littlefield, Kim White and others recently to discuss the project.
Jennifer Flynn of TDOT said, "Everyone is interested in keeping the project moving forward, but there were some unresolved issues with the final design on the project that needed to be addressed before the commissioner would consider its inclusion in a future three-year transportation improvement plan to receive funding.
"The commissioner did not want to go forward with the project until there was a consensus regarding the design. The meeting went very well, and we are working with the design firm for the project (Benesch) and Chattanooga city officials to finalize the design for the project so it can go forward.
"It will be spring 2013 before we know if it is included in the next three-year plan."
TDOT officials in mid-March put the project on hold after concerns were raised about the design at an Urban Design Challenge presentation sponsored by River City.
At the Urban Design Challenge session, a design team expressed concerns about ramps at Fourth Street not being closer to the highway and about a proposed flyover from MLK Boulevard to Fourth Street.
TDOT Deputy Commissioner and Chief Engineer Paul Degges said at the time, "Statements made at the meeting were not consistent with the collaboration between TDOT, the city of Chattanooga, and River City. The access to US 27 from downtown has been coordinated closely with the city of Chattanooga, and the ramp configurations we show are designed to provide safe access while being mindful of the context of the community's gateway.
"We have been working with the city of Chattanooga for several years to come up with a transportation solution that meets the needs of the community and also meets the gateway aspirations. Department officials have also met with River City on several occasions and were not aware of the concerns surrounding the final designs TDOT provided."
The project involves widening U.S. 27 from I-24 to south of the Olgiati Bridge.