As part of the bridge replacement project on I-24 over Germantown Road in Chattanooga, TDOT contract crews have begun pile driving operations for bridge foundations on Germantown Road near I-24. Originally this work was scheduled to take place during nighttime hours when traffic volume is lower because Germantown Road must be reduced to one lane in each direction during the work. On Wednesday evening, the contractor drove a test pile beginning at 10 p.m.
and ending by 2 a.m., not including the time it took to set up and break down the equipment.
Pile driving is a very loud operation on its own, but everyone on site realized that this particular location beneath a bridge seemed to intensify the sound from the impact of the pile driving hammer. Because of the close proximity to residential areas, TDOT officials made the decision to allow the contractor to do all future pile driving operations on Germantown Road during the daytime. TDOT will work with the City of Chattanooga to coordinate signal timing in the area during the work.
“After hearing the amount of noise generated from the pile driving operation, we decided to allow the contractor to close lanes on Germantown Road during the day to complete this work,” said TDOT Region 2 Director Joe Deering. “Even though traffic volume will be greater during the daytime, it is still down from what it normally is because people are continuing to work from home. This critical work needs to be done, and we believe that it is preferable to delay a driver for a few minutes during the day than to disrupt entire neighborhoods at night while families are trying to sleep.”
Pile driving operations will continue on a regular basis until the end of June, although there will be times where testing, preparation and weather interrupts the activity. Depending on how the pile driving operations progress, intermittent daytime pile driving operations could be possible at this location until the beginning of August.
This work is being done as part of a project to replace bridges over and on I-24 near mile marker 183 in Chattanooga, including the bridge on Belvoir Avenue over I-24 and the bridges on I-24 over Germantown Road. For more information on the I-24 bridge replacement project, visit the project website at https://www.tn.gov/tdot/projects/region-2/i-24-bridge-replacement-chattanooga.html. Additionally, the I-24 bridge replacement project website has a process for members of the public to sign up for project updates, including lane closure information.