Businesses and drivers deal with construction of diamond interchange
PADUCAH — For the past several months, traffic at the I-24 exit 4 interchange in Paducah has been bad. Crews are continuing to work on the double crossover diamond interchange project, even closing some side access roads. All the construction is frustrating for both drivers and businesses in the area.
“It’s an inconvenience all the way around,” says Mark Hawks, the general manager at Raffertys in Paducah. He says businesses has been tough since construction started.
“It’s down around 25% overall, I guess you’d say, but our regulars are faithful to us. They find a way here,” says Hawks.
Rafferty’s main entrance has been blocked for about a week now. The restaurant isn’t the only ones dealing with slow business. Hawks says almost every business off of exit 4 has been negatively impacted by the construction.
“It’s hurt all of our business quite a bit. When they had the James Sanders blocked off, it hurt them. It’s just a matter of it’s our turn,” says Hawks.
In addition to the affect on businesses, drivers are dealing with longer commutes and turning into side roads that are closed. It could also get worse when crews shift traffic in the area from Coleman Road to New Holt Road next week.
“After driving through it a couple of times, I don’t anymore,” says Molly Pullen. “I go the back way and come out by Concord, or I go to Lone Oak and do my grocery shopping. It’s changed the way I do business,” says Pullen.
People like Hawks are ready for construction to be finished.
“I’m looking forward to business picking back up as soon as it gets completed,” he says.
The traffic shift will begin on June 18 and could last through June 20. Crews will be closing U.S. 60 at the interchange and the ramps for five weeks starting on July 8.