KINGSPORT — Expect to see more than $12 million worth of street resurfacing take place in Kingsport within the coming year on such heavily traveled roads as Fort Henry, Fall Creek, Moreland, Main and Meadowview.
Deputy City Manager Ryan McReynolds recently gave an update to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen about the 2021 paving plan. For the past five years, Kingsport has been working toward a sustainable paving program where every city-owned street is paved every 20 to 25 years, rather than the current 50 to 55 years.
According to the plan, more than $12 million worth of street resurfacing will take place this year. That funding will come from the city and from the state.
THREE CATEGORIES OF PAVING
Kingsport breaks street resurfacing into three categories: the worst roads, neighborhood paving (basically where one area is targeted), and main roads (normally funded with state dollars).
Here’s a breakdown of which roads are slated for resurfacing this year and the amount of money earmarked:
• Main roads (16 miles): State Route 355 (Industry Drive), John B. Dennis Highway (from Wilcox to Stone), and a portion of Interstate 26 (from the Welcome Center to Eastern Star).
Budgeted amount: $9.9 million in state funds, $500,000 in city funds. McReynolds said possibly $2.5 million of that work could be pushed back to 2022.
• Neighborhood paving (16 miles): The West Ridge and Carolina Pottery area, with the work wrapping up by the end of summer.
Budgeted amount: $2.2 million in city funds.
• Worst Roads: $200,000 in city funds. McReynolds said this amount is just the material cost with the labor provided by city workers. These roads are scattered across town, including ones in Highland, Fairacres, and off Memorial Boulevard.
Nearly five years ago, Kingsport contracted with Barge Waggoner Sumner & Cannon to conduct a roadway condition assessment, where a specialized vehicle drove across town, shooting radar on the roadway and assessing its condition.
The equipment basically checked all 500 miles of Kingsport’s roads and ranked them based on condition.
McReynolds said BWSC will be resurveying all of the streets this autumn, seeing which ones fall into the “worse” category and to see if the city made any positive progress on its streets over the past five years.