A busy Knoxville road in now closed for several months as construction workers make some necessary repairs.
Crews closed the street Monday morning starting at 7:00 a.m. to through traffic until November 2013.
Matt Houser said, "It's going to be crazy. We don't really know how we're going to get to our house."
The 1.5 mile stretch of roadway is now off limits to drivers so workers can upgrade the natural gas, water, and wastewater mains in the neighborhood.
"Coming from West Knoxville to downtown, it changes the route completely. It's going to really mess up traffic flow to downtown for sure," said Houser.
Mary Curtis said, "I'm somewhat apprehensive and nervous somewhat about it. I try not to get over anxious about anything."
Despite concerns from some neighbors, Knoxville Utilities Board (KUB) said the upgrades are much needed.
Ted Tyree, KUB Senior Engineer, said, "Most of the lines that are in Lyons View Pike are either undersized or they're just old. For example, the waterline is close to 100 years old. It needs to be upgraded and we decided, obviously, if we're going to go in and have to close the entire road we needed to upgrade everything at one time."
KUB said crews will be working seven days a week (weather permitting) on the project, dividing the work into 1,000-foot sections at a time. The upgrade project starts on the eastern end of Lyons View Pike and will roll west.
Some who live and work in the area anticipate a 7-month long headache, but one that's worth the trouble.
Chris Lee said, "Anytime you can upgrade the city and make things more efficient for the homeowners throughout the street I think it's for the better."
Houser added, "Every road's going to get closed down at some point. So you just go to roll with it."
During the closure of Lyons View Pike, access will remain open to residents and businesses via vehicle hang tags provided by KUB. Uniformed officers will be stationed 24/7 at barricades on east and west ends of Lyons View Pike.
KUB will post regular updates throughout the project on its website www.kub.org, the KUB Facebook page, and via recorded messages on the dedicated project hotline at (865) 558 - 2330 (follow-up from a KUB representative by the end of the next business day). Additionally, KUB has set up a blog at lyonsviewpikeproject.blogspot.com to keep customers informed about project milestones.