Council approves $100K for traffic study

Traffic signal

The Morristown City Council on Tuesday approved a $100,000 contract for a traffic study of West Andrew Johnson Highway from the intersection with Morris Boulevard to just past the Jefferson County line. WSP USA, which was recommended by the Lakeway Area Metropolitan Transportation Planning Organization Executive Committee, was awarded the contract.

Federal grand funds, which will be funneled through the LAMTPO, will pick up 80 percent of the cost. Morristown municipal government will pay the 20% match, according to Rich DesGrosseilliers.

The study will be divided into three sections, but most of the emphasis will be on the middle section from the Highway 160 bypass, eastward to south Sugar Hollow Road near Manley Baptist Church, where significant future development is most likely to occur, according to DesGrosseilliers.

The study will involve the possible future need for turn lanes and traffic signals, and will specifically address vehicle stacking at the intersection with Kidwells Ridge Road. The Morristown Planning Department has received tentative plans for a new commercial development in that area, according to Steve Neilson, planning director.

“We want to keep West AJ as free-flowing as possible and make it safe,” DesGrosseilliers said this morning.

DesGrosseilliers says he anticipates Jefferson City, another LAMTPO member, will commission a corridor study from the Hamblen County line westward.

The other sections of WAJ that will be studied are from Walters Drive to Sugar Hollow Road and from Highway 160 to the county line, areas that have far less potential for growth.

A similar traffic-related corridor study is underway for East Morris Boulevard between the intersection with Highway 25-E to Jones Franklin Road.

In other business Tuesday, councilmembers unanimously reappointed Morristown City Judge Matt Sexton to another four-year term. Councilmember Bob Garrett and engineer John Hofer were reappointed to three-year terms on the Morristown-Hamblen Solid Waste Disposal System board.