Highway Committee to consider naming bridge on Elizabethton Highway

John Thompson • Mar 13, 2017 at 10:33 PM

ELIZABETHTON — Making repairs to a drainage line on Ingram Branch Road near Whitehead Hill and the naming of a bridge on the new Elizabethton Highway for a soldier killed in the Vietnam War were two of the items discussed during Monday’s meeting of the Highway Committee of the Carter County Commission.

The drainage problem was discussed when Charmaine and Bob Gentz came to the meeting to discuss a problem they were having with a highway tile that is causing erosion of their property and undermining the foundation of outbuildings and their driveway.

Mrs. Gentz told the committee that the water from three separate areas of the mountain come together and is forced through the pipe. She said the flooding usually occurs during periods of heavy rain once or twice a year. She said the problem is made worse because the tile is pointed directly at a wall.

Highway Department Assistant Superintendent Shannon Burchett said a large tile would help carry the large volume of water during storms. He said the area was full of rock, so it would probably be best to install a tile that has a broad base but is not as tall.

Committee member Charlie Von Cannon made a motion that the Highway Department install such a tile and angle it so it does not erode the Gentz property.

In other matters, the committee discussed a request to name an unnamed bridge on Highway 67, near the bridge named for Todd McKeehan. The request was to name the currently unnamed bridge in honor of Harold Wilson, who was killed in Vietnam in 1966. The request had been brought to the committee by Wilson’s son, Clayton Wilson. He provided the committee with a petition and photographs of the soldier.

Unlike the naming of bridges on county roads, the state legislature must take action to name bridges on state routes. The committee voted to hold a public hearing on the request in April as a first step in the process.

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