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Feelings mixed about Pellissippi Pkwy route change

11:25 PM, Jul 29, 2013   |    comments
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Tennessee Department of Transportation

More families will be forced to move their homes to make way for a longer Pellissippi Parkway.

Monday the Tennessee Department of Transportation announced a change in the route to the 4.4 mile extension in Blount County.

The law requires they work around an archeological site that fell in the middle of the original route. TDOT considered two alternatives, one to the east and one to the west.

TDOT chose to move the route to the west by about 150 feet. It pushes six homes out of the Kensington Place mobile home community and impacts another 20 or so with noise.

The total extension will displace 11 residents.

TDOT said the western route also minimizes the impact to two active farms and a church.

Bernice Riddle, a resident in an affected home, said she just moved in last month and isn't finished unpacking.

"It is aggravating. We just got this place, we just moved in you know? You don't want to have to leave," Riddle said.

Several other residents in the neighborhood said they are looking forward to moving.

"I'm ready to go. There ain't no other way around it. I'm ready to go," said resident Sean Gehrisch. "We already found some more property that's got more acreage to build on. Make a better place for my son to have."

TDOT will compensate the affected homes. They also have the option to move to another lot in the community.

TDOT said it will be years before the project is complete. The Federal Highway Administration will make a decision on the final approval by the end of 2013.

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