The city of Lebanon and Tennessee Department of Transportation worked together to implement needed signal improvements to the I-40 and TN 109 interchange ramp resulting in reduced congestion.

“We are consistently looking for ways to improve our roadways and provide greater levels of driver comfort,” said Mayor Bernie Ash in a news release. “After these improvements were installed, we began receiving positive feedback from the community that residents were experiencing significant decreases in southbound traffic, particularly during the morning rush hours.”

The city studied the intersection to see what infrastructure improvements could decrease travel delays and improve safety. The city collected turning movement count data and hired traffic engineering consultant Barge Design Solutions to model various options to determine which improvements would be most efficient and cost-effective.

One of the proposed recommendations from the study was to install a right turn signal for the southbound right turn movement from TN 109 onto westbound I-40 along with improvements to the channelization island and lane delineation. Based on the model and preliminary analysis, the level of service and delays indicated significant improvements if these changes were made. The model indicated that during the morning peak hours the overall intersection delay would decrease by 42% and the queue for the southbound right turn onto I-40 would decrease by 67%.

With support from TDOT, the city of Lebanon proceeded with the study’s recommendations for operational improvements including extending the on-ramp channelization for southbound turning movements which allows for increased utilization of the ramp. TDOT Region 3 partnered on the project to install a concrete island and provide traffic control. In addition, the city modified the traffic signal and installed pavement markings and delineators.

“In the engineering department, we always say that it is great to see a plan come together. Kristen Rice, our traffic and transportation engineer, did a phenomenal job teaming with TDOT to bring these improvements to fruition,” said Regina Santana, engineering services director.

The project cost the city $3,400, not including the labor by city employees. The cost of TDOT’s portion of the project was not available.

Submitted to the Democrat

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