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I-40 Rockslide pushing opening to April 2010

Maggie Valley NC skiing hasn't halted much since the weather here has been very good to Cataloochee Ski Resort... For those of you trying to get here from Tennessee, our local paper, The Mountaineer has published this information for you..

Written by The Mountaineer
Tuesday, 23 February 2010 18:39

The reopening of Interstate 40 has been postponed until late April due to inclement weather that has delayed efforts to clean up the site of a massive rockslide that closed a 20-mile stretch of interstate between the Haywood County boundary and Tennessee state line in October.

State department of transportation officials announced the delay Tuesday afternoon, citing cold temperatures, rain, snow and heavy winds as cause for the delay.

Workers will take advantage of the delay, using the extension of time to perform maintenance at five specific sites within a 4-mile stretch of the interstate between a traffic tunnel and Tennessee line, where authorities believe potential problems could occur. Work in those areas will primarily include scaling, or knocking down loose rocks, in addition to bolting rocks at one of the five identified problem areas, chief DOT engineer John Nance said.

When the interstate reopens late April, one westbound lane will remain closed for an additional four to five months while work continues to install catchment fencing and protective netting, Nance said. Authorities estimate work at the five sites to add a projected $4 million to the current price tag, estimated at around $10 million for the entire project.

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