VOL. 113 | NO. 49 | Thursday, March 11, 1999
By LAURIE JOHNSON
State transportation budget funds seven county projects
By LAURIE JOHNSON
The Daily News
Tennessees proposed transportation budget for the 1999-2000 fiscal year will total $1.3 billion and include 118 projects in 67 counties, Gov. Don Sundquist announced Wednesday.
The new budget, which Sundquist said attempts to meet the highway and mass transit needs of both urban and rural areas, includes funding for seven projects in Shelby County.
Major Shelby County projects include improvements to Germantown Road and extensions to State Route 385, which will serve as the countys new north-south "outer loop" when it is complete, said TDOT spokesperson Mary Robinson.
The proposed budget includes funding for acquiring 2.3 miles of right-of-way on Germantown Road between U.S. Highway 64 and U.S. Highway 70.
"This is a reconstruction project to widen Germantown Road to four lanes," Robinson said.
"The purchase of right-of-way is underway, and a contract for construction is scheduled to be let in spring of 1999."
The budget also includes funds for a project to widen Germantown Road to seven lanes between Crestridge Road and Stout Road.
"Engineering is now underway, but theres no date yet for letting the contract," Robinson said.
Budget appropriations for State Route 385 better known to Memphians as Nonconnah Parkway, Paul Barrett Parkway and the proposed Collierville-Arlington Parkway include funds for purchasing right-of-way for the Collierville-Arlington Parkway from State Route 86 to State Route 57, and from State Route 15 to just south of Interstate 40, she said.
The Collierville-Arlington Parkway will serve as a connecting road between the Paul Barrett Parkway and the Nonconnah Parkway.
The 1999 budget also provides for 4.5 miles of paving of Nonconnah Parkway, from Bailey Station Road to State Route 86 just south of Collierville.
Other Shelby County projects included in the new budget include widening I-55 to eight lanes for 3.7 miles, starting at the Mississippi state line to just north of Millbranch Road, and purchasing right-of-way for a 6.3-mile extension of State Route 14 between Singleton Parkway and Paul Barrett Parkway.
According to TDOT officials, Tennessees proposed 1999-2000 transportation budget includes funding for preliminary engineering for 32 new projects and right-of-way acquisitions for four more.
TDOT estimates the cost of the 36 projects at about $400 million.
The proposed budget also increases state funding to counties for rural highway needs by 25 percent, from $17.1 million in 1998 to $21.4 million.
Transportation Commissioner Bruce Saltsman presented the highway project listing Wednesday to members of the Senate and House Transportation Committee.
The proposed budget also includes $6 million in additional funding for mass transit, bringing the total state mass transit appropriation to $22.3 million, TDOT officials said.
Other major items in the 1999-2000 state transportation budget include:
Five projects along U.S. 75 (State Road 79) in Stewart and Montgomery counties to build a four-lane highway between Clarksdale and Dover.
New interchange construction funding for State Road 840 and a new connector to the proposed raceway near the Wilson/Rutherford county line.
Funding for three new sections of State Road 840 in Rutherford and Williamson counties.
Funding for preliminary engineering on five sections of a new route called the Upper Cumberland Development Route, which will run through 11 counties north and parallel to I-40. The route will begin in Wilson County at the proposed State Road 840 and end at Interstate 75 in Campbell County.
Expansion projects for urban interstates in Knox and Davidson counties.