By: Steve Short
Many roads and bridges in Gibson County have been undergoing major upgrades and reconstructions in the last two years, county Highway Superintendent Carl Stoppenhagen said.
“The demands placed by the volume of traffic and repetitious, heavy loads are fast rendering Gibson County’s roads and bridges obsolete,” said Stoppenhagen. “Road improvements accomplish safety objectives, while widening and hard surfacing roads.”
The state’s IMPROVE Act, approved under former Governor Bill Haslam, has provided the necessary funding for the county to repair roads and replace bridge structures without having budgetary roadblocks, said Stoppenhagen.
This month, workers are reconstructing the Cades-Atwood Road bridge, the ninth bridge in the county that has been rebuilt with state funds since the IMPROVE ACT was passed in 2017. Three more bridge structures in the county are set to be repaired in the near future after contracts are approved, said Stoppenhagen.
In November, County Commissioner Travis Landrum gave his fellow commissioners a summary report on road work in the county during September and October 2019.
Highlights of road and bridge projects included:
Bridges inspected by TDOT – Major repairs were made on Lillie Brown Rd. north of Bradford. A bridge on the Humboldt-Gibson Wells Rd. was rebuilt with a 40-ton rating. A bridge on New Bethlehem Road, located near the church, was repaired and also has a 40-ton rating.
IMPROVE Act bridges – The Thetford Rd. bridge was reconstructed by the Thomson & Thomson firm and was near completion in November. The Cades-Atwood Rd. bridge was under construction by the Dement Construction firm.
Road reconstructions – Reconstruction was competed on Thetford Rd. and Germantown Rd., with new tar and chip surfaces.
Paving and striping – In Medina, Mt. Zion Rd. at Hwy. 152 and at Hwy. 186 was paved with new striping, stop lines and turning arrows. The intersection at Lewis Road and Turkey Creek was realigned and repaved with new striping and stop lines.
New drains – Cross drains were replaced in preparation for State Aid paving projects in the next fiscal year.
Salem Church Road – Rebuilding was completed on sections of Salem Church Rd.
Resurfacing – During September and October, the county used 95,458 gallons of RS-2 asphalt and 3,078 tons of chip rock to resurface roads with tar and chip.
Road maintenance – Highway Dept. workers also conducted routine road maintenance, chip sealing, installing culverts, mowing and grading. Ten after hours callouts were reported; 38 work orders were also called in.
THETFORD ROAD BRIDGE – This bridge, located north of Cades in rural Gibson County, is one of several that has been reconstructed since 2017 with funds from the state’s IMPROVE Act. Thetford Road bridge is just north of Cades, near Laneview-Concord Rd.
CADES-ATWOOD ROAD BRIDGE – Workers recently prepared the newly constructed deck on the Cades-Atwood Rd. bridge for a concrete pour. The bridge is the ninth in the county to be rebuilt with funds from the state’s IMPROVE program, approved under former Gov. Bill Haslam in 2017.