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TDOT to talk red lights at FBMA tonight

Seeking state help for an estimated $800,000 price tag for a center turn lane on Kingston Pike at Everett Road, Farragut town officials have invited a high-ranking Tennessee Department of Transportation official to spell out state traffic qualifications for signal lights at Everett, Old Stage and Virtue roads.

Fred Corum, TDOT Region One director, is scheduled to speak and field questions during tonight’s Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting in Town Hall beginning at 6:55 p.m.

The town will seek explanations about its warrants — or criteria such as traffic volume, frequency of left turns, frequency and severity of accidents — that would justify signal lights.

Mayor W. Edward Ford III and town engineer Darryl Smith said money is in place to install signals at all three intersections during the Farragut Municipal Planning Commission meeting Thursday, Nov. 3.

Smith said, “Really, it’s a matter of needing the warrants before they will allow installation,” adding that an eight hour [traffic flow] warrant is the main litmus test toward getting the signals installed.

“All three of those are priorities,” Smith added. “There is no question in my mind that there will be signals at each of those intersections. ... They [TDOT] want a listing of our priorities along that route. Money is not a constraint at this point with us.”

Meanwhile, Smith said engineering plans have been developed for overall improvement of the Everett Road intersection at Kingston Pike.

To add a center turn lane there, Smith said the total cost “would probably be in the neighborhood of about” $800,000. Of course, we’d like to see as much money as we can get.”

Looking to get financial assistance from TDOT for constructing a center turn lane, “Without a center turn lane, the idea of placing a signal at that location is never going to happen,” Smith said. “But we feel there is a definite need for a center turn lane. The problem is that is right at the crossing of Little Turkey Creek, it’s about an eighty-foot bridge right there. Most people don’t realize how big that bridge is.”

Ford added that upon construction of the center turn lane, there will be “installation of wiring in the pavement on Kingston Pike to accommodate a traffic signal ... we’re taking steps ahead of time in anticipation” of a traffic light.

Ford said additional traffic signal requests along Kingston Pike, “have been going on for years.”

In other business,

the commission:

• unanimously approved (Joel Garber and Edward St. Clair absent) a site plan for a new Cingular Wireless equipment shelter at an existing cell tower at 519 Virtue Road, zoned OS-P and telecommunications tower overlay.

• unanimously approved an amendment to the Blast Rock site plan, located on the south side of Parkside Drive adjacent to Home Federal Bank, parcel 191.08, tax map 130, zoned C-1.

• unanimously approved public a final plat for Cool Spring subdivision, located on the north side of Fleenor Road and west of Maple Tree Drive, zoned R-1 and OSR, 10.6 acres, 27 lots, subject to items and questions on their plat such as drainage easements.

• unanimously approved a resubdivision plat of parcels 8 and 17, tax map 142AC, 925 and 931 Prince George Parish Drive, zoned R-2, 2.64 acres, to move an interior property line, subject to obtaining appropriate signatures and addressing outstanding items for a recreation lot so to get a certificate of occupancy.

• unanimously approved a concept plan for The Reserve at Berkeley Park, parcel 29, tax map 142, Prince George Parish Drive, zoned R-1 and OSR, 25.84 acres, 53 lots, subject to adding plan notes and connecting the old driveway to the existing walking trail and bridge, moving lots 19 to 24 east to save trees, clarifying that the walking trial to Everett Road would be asphalted and that all road profiles meet minimum requirements.

• held a workshop discussion of Development Review Process Evaluation Committee action items.

See related story on page 1.


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