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Street resurfacing announced

Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved the list of streets to be resurfaced in fiscal year 2009 at its Aug. 14 meeting.

“Every year, when we put this list together, we have several things we have to consider. First of all, of course, is our resurfacing budget, and this year we have a budget of $850,000,” said Town Engineer Darryl Smith.

The list includes 3.04 miles of streets and 1.5 miles of the Grigsby Chapel Greenway.

Streets set to be tackled for resurfacing are St. Andrews Drive in Fox Den, North Fox Den Drive (from the club house to Kingston Pike), Oakland Hills Point (from Singing Hills Point to the end of the Oakland Hills), South Fox Den Drive (from the first “eyebrow” to Kingston Pike), Brookstone Drive in Brixworth Subdivision, Brixworth Blvd., Redmill Lane (from Turkey Creek Road to Lake Mill Lane) and the entrance to St. John Court.

In addition, the Grigsby Chapel greenway from Berkeley Park to Grigsby Chapel Road will be resurfaced.

Vice Mayor J. Michael Haynes called this selection into question.

“For the last two years, last year and now this year, your recommendation has been roughly two or three times more in Ward I than in Ward II,” Haynes said.

“I’m fine with us addressing the worst roads wherever they are; I don’t have a problem with that, and that’s why I’ve always supported this system. But it does concern me if we get down to a list and then subjectively pick off that list … that this year, 72.5 percent of our road resurfacing budget is being spent in Ward I,” he added.

Haynes asked to see the list the engineering department worked from to come up with the nine roads.

Smith said selection “really requires going out and walking around on the streets, comparing one subdivision to the next.”

Smith explained the engineering staff uses an in-house pavement management system, RSMS, to help select the worst 20 to 30 percent of the 115 miles of streets in Farragut.

However, because the system does not analyze conditions such as age, slope and drainage, a large portion of determining which roads are resurfaced and when depends on first-hand observation.

“Our staff is out there throughout the year … we do have to go out there and compare all of our streets.

“We’ll take the worst 50 percent and look at them very close; get out and walk,” Smith said.

“They all age differently, so what we wind up with, since all of the streets are so close in condition, all of them relatively good, from year to year, those streets can show up a little bit differently,” he added.

A street could be ranked high on the list one year, but be replaced by more urgent matters the next, Smith said, citing Jamestowne Boulevard, which “doesn’t seem to be getting any older.”

“Other streets are getting older faster than Jamestowne,” he added.

“Just like humans: some age faster than others,” said Alder-man Tom Rosseel.

Smith added many of the oldest roads are located in the North Ward.

“Most of the older development within the Town has been in the North Ward, which has caused this, for probably more than the last couple of years. We do try to balance it out,” Smith said.

“Both sides of our Town need improvement,” Haynes said.

Haynes deferred seeing the comprehensive list until next fiscal year.

Smith added the list was relatively conservative because of high gas prices.

“At this time, we’re looking at some of the highest asphalt prices we’ve ever seen,” Smith told the Board. The memo he submitted quoted binder prices of $65 per ton and surface mixes from $75 to $83 per ton.

“We feel like we’ve put together a fairly conservative estimate on our streets this year, and at this time, we have a total cost estimate of $793,297,” Smith said.

“We feel its important to keep a fairly reasonable buffer between what we’re showing on our contract right now and our overall budget,” he added, saying that streets could always be added later if bid prices are lower than expected.


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