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County mayor talks partnership with Town

Knox County Mayor Mike Ragsdale addressed a County partnership with the Town during Farragut’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen meeting Thursday, July 23.

“What I wanted to do is quite simple: I just wanted to come down and thank you for your service,” Ragsdale, pictured right, said.

“I am proud to be a resident of the town of Farragut and I think you do a great job. This is a place I am very proud to call home.

“I view the relationship between our two governments as a partnership, and one in which we should be working closely together to serve the citizens of our respective areas,” he added.

While Ragsdale never mentioned any specific partnerships, Mayor Ralph McGill later mentioned a possible joint project between the Town and Knox County to extend Outlet Drive to Snyder Road.

“We’ve met with Knox County officials a couple of times in the last couple of months to discuss the fact that Knox County would like to extend Outlet Drive … to Snyder Road,” Town Engineer Darryl Smith said.

The plan would connect Outlet Drive, which runs parallel to Interstate-40/75, to Lovell Road and Campbell Station Road.

“It has long been on our major road plan; it is to eventually happen. We’ve had in mind that this would be development-driven.

“We’re not really certain at what level the town of Farragut would be asked to participate,” Smith said.

McGill said portions of Outlet Drive would be in Farragut town limits, and he wanted to make sure the right-of-way was clear for sidewalks to be developed in accordance with Town regulations.

“It might require the purchase of right-of-way beyond what they plan for the road,” McGill said.

McGill was unsure if any possible expenditures for the project would land in this fiscal year’s budget or not.

“They’re on the fast track on it,” McGill said.

“The likelihood is this is something we would incur no cost on this year, it’s just something we need to plan for and maybe keep in the backs of our minds,” he added.

The plan to extend Outlet Drive revolves largely around hopes to alleviate traffic on Kingston Pike from vehicles traveling from Campbell Station to Lovell (or vice versa), and to open another corridor for development.

“Farragut is an important part of Knox County and I do think it’s important we maintain a dialogue,” Ragsdale said.

“The services we provide to the people of the Town are critically important, I think, as it relates to the school system, public health, public libraries and other areas,” he added.

“We look forward to a good relationship,” McGill said.

McGill asked if anyone had questions for Ragsdale. No one came forward.

“This is much easier than what I normally get,” Ragsdale said with a laugh.


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