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Big changes coming to Big Rock Interchange

Thursday morning at nine, big changes are coming to the Big Rock Interchange in Little Rock.
LITTLE ROCK, AR - Thursday morning at nine, big changes are coming to the Big Rock Interchange in Little Rock.

That's when the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department starts seven lane shifts over the next twenty days on Interstate 430.

"I live in Sherwood, so I go 430 home because it's quicker and it's gonna be a big hassle for me," says Michelle Hays of Sherwood.

"The map doesn't mean a ton to me because I'm not good at maps, but the construction concerns me having two teenage daughters just because it seems to change quite often," says mother Cheri Fink.

Thursday morning, at 430 South and Rodney Parham, crews will start the first lane shift of a twenty day project at the Big Rock Interchange.

"Ultimately, what's gonna happen is we will have two lanes, two main lanes of traffic that will move over onto what we call the collector distributor road," explains Scott Bennett, AHTD Director.

One way to get around the mess is to detour through Breckenridge to get to Shackleford.

Three lanes of Southbound traffic will become two at Rodney Parham, and workers will shorten the ramps meaning you'll have less time to merge. Eventually, all traffic will fit into one lane. Then, crews will do the same thing on the Northbound side.

Those are just the first two projects happening in the next twenty days.

"Is this going to be inconvenient for people? Yes. Is it gonna take longer for people to get where they're going? Yes. Is this gonna be better for everyone in the long run when this project is completed? Absolutely," says Bennett.

The Highway Department warns if you choose to go through the interchange, it could get confusing, and it will take longer than it does now. The best advice is to avoid the area, and that probably means using Shackleford to get around it.

Weather could delay the projects. Rain could make it so they can't paint stripes, and storms and wind could mess with beam hanging. The twenty days could turn into thirty or longer.
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