Interstate 65 is getting safety improvements, and the highway will close from downtown Louisville to the Watterson Expressway so the work can be done.

Southbound lanes are scheduled to be closed from 8 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 8, until 5 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 11. Traffic will be detoured via I-64 West to I-264 East and then reconnected with I-65 South.

Northbound lanes are scheduled to close Oct. 20-23.

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet will install what it calls "a high-friction surface course" between the Chestnut Street and Muhammad Ali Boulevard exits. You probably know that stretch as "hospital curve."

"We have used this material on other curved sections of roadway and have seen a significant reduction in the number of crashes involving lane departures on wet pavement," Matt Bullock, chief district engineer for KYTC's Louisville district, said in a news release.

The cabinet also sill replace asphalt pavement joints between the Watterson and Chestnut Street, which will provide a smoother driving surface and improve waterproofing.

The closure dates could change because of inclement weather or other delays. But full closure of I-65 will not be permitted on Labor Day weekend, University of Louisville home football game weekends or during the St. James Art Fair.

Louisville Paving and Construction Co. was awarded a $1.8 million contract for the project. All work must be completed by Nov. 15.

Carolyn Tribble Greer manages digital operations of the news department.