Work set to begin on the ‘Sunken Lands’ section of I-555

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 492 views 

One of the roughest stretches of Interstate 555 between Jonesboro and Memphis is about to be overhauled. A $12.272 million project to replace the decks on 16 bridges in the Sunken Lands area in Poinsett County on I-555 is set to begin in mid-March, according to the Arkansas Department of Transportation.

American Contracting Services was selected in August to rehab the decks. The work includes hydrodemolition, or the removal of the top two inches of concrete by high pressure water forced through small nozzles. The driving surface is to be replaced with a new concrete overlay.

The contract was awarded as a flexible start date contract, which gave the contractor an option to begin work between October 2017 and January 2018. ADT had scheduled maintenance and repair to the superstructures of each bridge prior to the contractor beginning work on the bridge decks. The superstructure is the structural system underneath the bridge that supports the driving surface.

Two unforeseen bridge strikes in other parts of Northeast Arkansas delayed the maintenance work because crews had to make emergency repairs to those bridges. The first was a fatal accident on the Harrisburg Road overpass on I-555 in Jonesboro in June. The second was an accident on the Mississippi County Road 378 overpass on I-55 north of Burdette last November.

Recent rains have accelerated pothole development as water penetrated the pavement cracks and caused the surface materials to loosen, according to state officials A temporary asphalt pavement is being placed on some of the bridge decks to improve ride quality until more significant rehabilitation by the contractor can take place, according to ADoT.