Update: TX-DOT releases statement concerning Loop 323 construction and delays
POSTED: Friday, August 17, 2012 - 11:53am
UPDATED: Friday, August 17, 2012 - 1:09pm
TYLER, TX (KETK) - — Crews from Texas Department of Transportation contractor Big Creek Construction are sill performing clean-up operations on Tyler’s WSW Loop 323 between SH 155 and West Front Street, which has Loop 323 down to one northbound lane in that area.
A stray thunderstorm early this morning delivered heavy rainfall on freshly-shot seal coat, washing it away before it had a chance to cure, causing the rock to come loose.
“Rain in particular has been very difficult to predict this summer,” said TxDOT spokesman Larry Krantz. “The contractor came to work with a clear radar and low percentage of rain last night, only to see this happen a few hours later. They have responded quickly, have swept the Loop thoroughly, and are beginning to make temporary repairs so all lanes of the Loop can re-open.”
Motorists whose vehicles were damaged by this incident should contact Carol Stone with Big Creek Construction at (979) 200-9379.
Meanwhile, Krantz added, motorists should be thinking about alternate routes for their evening commute since the temporary repairs may be in progress into the night.
“Our main goal is to get everything back open and up to proper safety standards,” Krantz said. “But we won’t be sacrificing safety for speed.”
Looking ahead, Big Creek Construction says it is planning to re-apply the seal coat during daylight operations when the weather allows, which will likely be early next week. That will mean additional lane closures, but only for one day while the work is in progress.
"We're hoping to have this done by Monday or Tuesday, but we’ve just been reminded, Mother Nature is in control of things for the moment," Krantz said. “We’re going to be absolutely sure we have the conditions we need before go.”
Crews have also been instructed not to begin setting lane closures before 9 a.m.
After the daytime work is completed, crews will resume nighttime operations, which call for work to be done between 7 p.m. and 5 a.m. Sunday-Thursday.
“There will obviously be some inconvenience involved in correcting this,” Krantz said. “To minimize that, we’re asking folks to seek an alternate route of they can.”
Update: The Tyler Police Department is urging all drivers to avoid the West Loop 323 from State Highway 155 south to West Shaw Street. This portion of the Loop is under construction and only one northbound lane of traffic for Loop 323 is currently open.
Officials are planning to shut down all but one lane on North-bound Loop 323 in between 155 and West Front. in Tyler.
TX-DOT tells KETK they put out new gravel before the storms hit, and when they did, it caused the gravel to become loose.
There are traffic delays in the area, we will have more details as they become available.
TX-DOT says they will be sending out a press release.