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‘Islands finished,’ Town engineer says

The town of Farragut has announced construction on the Grigsby Chapel Road traffic calming islands has been completed.

Reflectors and striping already have been installed according to design specifications, but Town Engineer Darryl Smith said he wanted to install additional reflectors.

“I think the reflectors work great,” Alderman John Williams said at the Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting, Thursday, June 25.

“I want to put some more reflectors just so it shows up a little bit better at night on the approaches,” Smith said, particularly at the island just west of Fretz Road.

Williams then asked about weed control on the islands until they are landscaped in the fall. According to Smith, Public Works had been issued a work order to oversee that.

“There are a couple of rather large weeds out there,” Smith said.

“I thought that was the first tree that was planted,” Mayor Ralph McGill joked.

In response to the speed limit on Grigsby Chapel, Smith said the limit throughout the length of the road was 40 mph, despite a 25 mph “warning sign” in the curve at the intersection of GCR and Smith Road.

“It’s more of a caution that you really don’t want to go more than 25 around this curve,” Smith said.

“The curve has a 25 mile per hour design speed. The speed limit is still 40, but you need to slow down there.

“The speed limit is 40 throughout that route but there are places you really ought not be doing 40. It’s like that on any road … sometimes these roads may have a speed limit higher than the design speed at one location,” he added.

The speed limit in the Town is 25 mph unless otherwise posted.

Smith also presented the Board with information about other road projects in Town limits.

• The contract for Campbell Station Road improvements from Jamestowne Boulevard to Parkside Drive was awarded to APAC-Atlantic Inc. in June for a little more than $5 million, significantly less than TDOT’s projection of more than $8 million.

The Town received $2 million in stimulus funding for the project, some of which will be spent and the rest refunded.

“We are meeting next week with Knox County Schools officials and T-DOT regarding traffic control within the project limits and how it will affect school traffic,” Smith said.

• Another project in design is the Old Stage Road and Watt Road extension, which will extend Watt from its current dead-end at the Icearium to Old Stage, and which will widen both roads.

“What’s the rationale?” Alderman Jeff Elliott, a Fort West resident, asked.

“I really believe this route will improve access to Watt Road so more people will head down Watt Road to the Interstate instead of Campbell Station,” Smith said.

“The idea is to alleviate some of the congestion on Kingston Pike and Campbell Station Road,” he added.

• Right-of-way and easement purchases are still ongoing for Kingston Pike improvements at Everett Road, and Smith expected TDOT could let the project by late fall. The improvements will include widening the bridge over Little Turkey Creek to create a center turn lane on Kingston Pike, curb and gutter and sidewalks.

• A street resurfacing list should appear before the Board for approval in July.

• The Montgomery walking trail along the back of Fort West subdivision should be completed by mid-July.

• The additional southbound lane at Interstate-40/75 and Campbell Station Road should be completed by mid-July. The new lane will help more traffic through the light during each cycle, hopefully preventing westbound Interstate traffic from backing up.

• Right-of-way and easement purchases are still ongoing for Everett and Union roads to Everett Hills Subdivision for widening. Construction on the project could begin in fiscal year 2010.

• TDOT will manage improvements to Concord Road from Turkey Creek Road to Northshore Drive. The project currently is in design.


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