MANCHESTER, Tenn. -
The Tennessee Department of Transportation and the Tennessee Highway Patrol are working alongside Manchester authorities to keep traffic flowing as 80,000 fans descend on Manchester for the 13th Annual Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival.
The festival kicks off on Thursday night and continues through Sunday, though organizers are opened the gates Wednesday at 8 p.m. to allow more time for vehicles to enter the campgrounds.
“During the Bonnaroo festival, the main goal is to keep through traffic moving smoothly on I-24 while getting festival goers safely into and out of the festival site,” said TDOT Commissioner John Schroer.
He continued, “TDOT has once again coordinated with THP and other agencies well ahead of the festival to ensure that traffic delays are kept to a minimum throughout the festival period.”
State troopers began patrolling the area on ground and by air Wednesday night, an will continue to do so 24 hours a day until Bonnaroo is over.
TDOT HELP units are scheduled to assist with traffic management during the four-day festival and will offer aid to any motorists who need it.
The speed limit will be decreased to 55 mph on I-24 between mile marker 104.6, just west of Exit 105, and mile markers 129.4, during the duration of the festival.
Officials said Exit 111 will be used as the main festival exit, while exits 97, 105, 112, 117 and 127 will be used as alternative exits if congestion begins to occur.
TDOT is also expected to provide variable message signs to warn drivers of any delays.
Last year, state troopers worked 17 traffic accidents, including one fatal, and wrote 88 citations.
During the event, motorists can call 511 from any mobile or land line phone for traffic updates or visit the TDOT Web site.