Deadline approaches for road repair bids

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Contractors qualified to repair a section of washed out roadway in Great Smoky Mountains National Park have until Friday to get their bids in.

Park officials say tomorrow (2/15) is the deadline for the 5 pre-qualified contractors to submit their bids.

90,000 cubic yards, which is as long as a football field, was washed away in January after a landslide. Park officials have already granted work for phase 1.

The park has awarded the first phase of work to APAC, Atlantic, Harrison Division, to develop an assess road to the slide area, remove debris, and stabilize the slope above the work area. Officials estimate this will cost around $200,000.

The 2nd phase of work will involve the reconstruction of the roadway and contractors can bid on the work now. It's expected to cost between $3 and $7 million dollars to get the road repaired.

Right now the park estimates the road will reopen by mid-May to early June. The park says this is a top priority project for them to complete.

Newfound Gap Road will remain closed to thru traffic during the construction, but visitors are still able to access the park to Newfound Gap from the Tennessee side and to Smokemont Campground from the Cherokee entrance.

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