State and Local Officials Discuss Traffic Solutions at Pine Haven School, YAI

City of Jamestown Engineer Tom Bennett (far right) discusses possible approaches to addressing the traffic congestion issue at Pine Haven Elemenatry School and Alvin C. York Institute at the November 26 joint meeting between local officials, TDOT personnel, and State legislators. Although the process of solving the issue will take some time, all present expressed a positive outlook towards improving the traffic situation at Jamestown’s northern border.

By Jacob E. Rosenbaum

Any Fentress County residents who have children, grandchildren, or young family members attending Alvin C. York Institute or Pine Haven Elementary School are well aware of the traffic congestion issue that has been the case on North Main Street for a number of years now.

A number of months ago, the issue was brought up during a meeting of the Fentress County Board of Education, in which Mr. Gary Peters, newly elected Board Member from the 5th District, said that many of his constituents had expressed concern about the congestion, and that he was very interested in looking into solutions to the problem. The other members of the School Board, as well as Director of Schools Mike Jones, agreed that it would be best to try and find a way to alleviate some of the traffic during peak transit times. However, the issue of widening the present road, or  building an access road is not a simple one. In addition to formulation of an optimal improvement plan, and  figuring the cost of construction of said improvements, the location itself is legally complex for a number of reasons:

1) The road is the property of the City of Jamestown, and not technically part of Highway 127, which would allow for greater financial and practical  assistance from the State.

2) The current roadway has utility lines running along either side, which means that if the road were to be widened (for the purposes of installing a turning lane) these utilities would have to be relocated.

3) The property on both sides of the road belongs to York Institute and the Tennessee Department of Education, which means that any action taking place on said land will have to be agreed to by York Institute and the State, either by granting an easement or by extending a lease.

Read the rest of the story in this weeks Fentress Courier.