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I-65 work to cause traffic problems

Another season of traffic congestion is in store for I-65 travelers as well as local motorists thanks to upcoming work on the I-65 bridges spanning the Tennessee River, north of Priceville.

Starting July 16, motorists traveling northbound and southbound on I-65 will be urged to travel U.S. 31 through Falkville, Hartselle, Decatur and Athens.

The diversion will enable workers for a Minnesota-based company to apply a new, non-skid polymer surface on the bridge decks, according to Rebecca Leigh White, information specialist for the Alabama Department of Transportation. The work has a target date of August for completion.

“The new surface will provide better traction,” White said. “There are no plans to close all lanes of the bridges or the bridges themselves.”

At least one lane of the bridges will be closed at all times during the construction period. To ease congestion as the work takes place, ALDOT is encouraging motorists to use the U.S. 31 bridge to cross the river.

Northbound traffic will be asked to exit I-65 at Lacon, Thompson Road in Hartselle and Alabama 67 in Priceville. Southbound traffic has the option of exiting the interstate north of Athens or Tanner.

To further ease congestion motorist are asked not to exit on Alabama 36 in Hartselle or U.S. 72 in Athens.

White said ALDOT more details will be released about the project during a briefing on July 9.

Brent Maze contributed to this report.