Work is progressing on the landslide that occurred on January 16th that took out over 200 linear feet of Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441) within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
A contract has been awarded for the first phase of work to APAC –Atlantic, Harrison Division, a Knoxville based company, to develop an access road to the slide area, remove debris, and stabilize the slope above the work area. This phase is estimated to cost about $200,000, and will prepare the site for the second phase that will involve complete reconstruction. This stabilization phase began on January 28, and is expected to last a few weeks.
Federal Highways Administration (FHWA) has completed the site assessment, and has posted a pre-solicitation for qualified contractors interested in repairing the roadway. The estimate for the second phase of work is expected to cost between $3,000,000 and $7,000,000, and is expected to be awarded in mid-February. The final construction work is expected to begin shortly after the bid is awarded.
The anticipated time frame for completion is Mid-May to early June, however, this will be dependent on the information in the final solicitation package. Newfound Gap Road will remain closed to thru traffic during the construction, but visitors will still be able to access the park to Newfound Gap from the Tennessee side and to Smokemont Campground from the Cherokee entrance.