Ovoca Riley Creek Intersection

The intersection of Ovoca and Riley Creek roads will be getting some improvements this fiscal year, according to city officials.

The land at one of the city’s most problematic intersections will soon receive some improvements.

Earlier this year, the city purchased the triangle-shaped piece of property at the intersections of Riley Creek and Ovoca roads with the idea of improving the intersection for local traffic. The cost was approved at $60,000 last month.

The intersection was previously studied in 2019 in order to determine possible solutions for the area, particularly as that section of town has seen increased interest from local developers. The results from the traffic study listed several possible solutions for the intersection, including short-term, long-term and a permanent roundabout solution. Estimates for the proposed solutions ranged from $124,000 for the near-term improvements to $600,000 for the construction of a roundabout.

Last fiscal year, the Tullahoma Board of Mayor and Aldermen set aside $125,000 from the Governor’s Local Support Grant funds to be used for the implementation of the near-term improvements, which include correcting the alignment of the roads. According to Director of Public Works Butch Taylor, the project was bid out under the city’s previous paving contract with Rogers Group. Because the city is now in a paving contract with a different company, Wright Paving, of Fayetteville, the city first approached that company with the needed work. According to Taylor, Wright Paving could not match the original Rogers Group proposal; additionally, Rogers Group has agreed to honor the original price it set last fiscal year.

According to the proposal, Rogers Group will perform the work for the previously agreed upon price of $125,000. The work to be done includes: excavating the new roadway alignment of Ovoca Road to Riley Creek Road; constructing a new roadway section of 10-foot base, 2-inch B-modified and 2-inch E surface mix asphalt; applying a “high friction surface course” on the new roadway alignment; installing painted and thermoplastic pavement markings as detailed by the city; demoing the existing route being replaced and placing topsoil with seed and straw; and erecting solar signs and/or signs on posts as detailed by the city.

According to city officials, the work is anticipated to be completed before the end of the city’s fiscal year, which ends June 30. A more exact timeline is not yet known.

Staff Writer

Erin McCullough has won awards for her news reporting, community lifestyles and education reporting in the three years she's been a journalist. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and currently lives in Tullahoma with her cat, Luna.

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