The Interstate 40 Hernando DeSoto Bridge over the Mississippi River was closed indefinitely in both directions on Tuesday, May 11, after a crack was discovered in the bridge, which connects West Memphis, Ark., and Memphis, Tenn. 


If you are using PC*MILER Web or our Web APIs, or if you are using live traffic in CoPilot or PC*MILER, you will be routed around the closure.  In many cases, the new route will take the Interstate 55 bridge, about three miles south. 


However, the detour is bringing heavy traffic to the I-55 bridge, and you might want to consider alternate routes that avoid both bridges. These routes can be generated automatically in your Trimble MAPS applications by using the Closures feature in ContentTools


In this article:


Closing Only the I-40 Bridge

To be sure your Trimble MAPS applications generate routes around the bridge, we recommend creating a Closure in ContentTools. Closures are temporary restrictions for specific road segments. They cause a road segment to be avoided when generating a route. 


To create the closure:

  • Log in to ContentTools.
  • At the top of the screen, click on Search and enter I-40 Memphis
  • In the list of locations that pops up, select I-40 Memphis, TN, 38103, US Shelby County. The map zooms to the I-40 bridge.
  • At the top of the screen, click on Manage Route Modifiers.
  • In the Route Modifiers Sets panel, click on Closures > Add New Closure.
  • While holding down the Ctrl button, click on several areas on the I-40 bridge on the map, in both directions, to select the road links you want to close.
  • To finish, click on Save to save your Closure. (The road links you closed will turn red.)


The Closure will be available:



Note: If you do not have a traffic license for CoPilot, you must close the I-40 bridge in ContentTools to be sure routes avoid it. 


Closing Both the I-40 and I-55 Bridges

If you would like to close both bridges and generate alternate routes, follow the same steps as above for closing the I-40 bridge. This time:

  • Search for I-55 West Memphis and select the first result, I-55, US-61, US-64 West Memphis, AR 72301.
  • Pan to the right on the map to find the section of bridge to close.
  • Create the closure.



Example Alternate Routes

Below are some of the possible alternate routes that avoid both bridges.


Trips between:

Louisville, KY (and north / east) and

Little Rock, AR (and south / west)

  • Blue route is with the I-40 bridge open.
  • Brown route is with the I-40 bridge closed as well as the neighboring I-55 bridge closed.
  • Alternate route is 9.5 miles longer and approximately $11 more expensive.



Trips between:

Jackson, MS (and south) and

Saint Louis, MO (and north)

  • Blue route is with the I-40 bridge open.
  • Brown route is with the I-40 bridge closed as well as the neighboring I-55 bridge closed.
  • Alternate route is 9.9 miles longer and approximately $26 more expensive.



Trips between:

Chattanooga, TN (and east) and

Oklahoma City, OK (and west)

  • Blue route is with the I-40 bridge open.
  • Brown route is with the I-40 bridge closed as well as the neighboring I-55 bridge closed.
  • Alternate route is 29.7 miles longer and approximately $54 more expensive.