Nebraska company picked to make repairs to I-40 Mississippi River bridge

State News

In this undated image released by the Tennessee Department of Transportation shows a crack is in a steel beam on the Interstate 40 bridge, near Memphis, Tenn. The Tennessee Department of Transportation says the crack is in a 900-foot steel beam that provides stability for the Interstate 40 bridge that connects Arkansas and Tennessee over the Mississippi River. The bridge was closed Tuesday, May 11, 2021 after inspectors found the crack. (Tennessee Department of Transportation via AP)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A construction company with past work on major road projects in Arkansas has been chosen to make the repairs to the Interstate 40 bridge spanning the Mississippi River.

A spokesperson with the Arkansas Department of Transportation said Monday afternoon that the Kiewit Corporation out of Omaha, Nebraska, will handle to fixes to the bridge connecting the Natural State and Tennessee.

During a news conference earlier Monday, ARDOT Director Lorie Tudor said that she had requested that the Tennessee Department of Transportation do a drone survey of the bridge, “to bring confidence to the public that the previous inspection was performed correctly and that it is currently in good condition.”

Kiewit has a history of involvement with many major road construction projects in Arkansas. One of their divisions provided the design and construction of the 30 Crossing project in 2019.

Before that, another division of the business was awarded a $22.9 million contract to construct a new interchange ramp between Highway 10 and Interstate 430 in Pulaski County.

Tudor also announced during the news conference Monday that an ARDOT employee in charge of reviewing video of bridge shot in 2019, in which the crack could be seen, had been fired and that other inspections made the former staffer were now under review.

Tudor also said the agency was referring the matter to the FBI and the U.S. Attorney General for further investigation.

Staff with Kiewit are expected to give updates on the different phases of the repair later this week. There currently is no estimate for when the bridge will reopen.

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