La Vergne drivers in for a bumpy ride as streets go unpaved
LA VERGNE, TN (WSMV) -
There are nearly 200 miles of streets and roads in La Vergne, but many of them will go unpaved this year because a little less than half of the city's street budget has to be used to pave one road.
City leaders were told they had to pave Jones Mill Road, or else.
La Vergne resident Joshua Nwankwo said since he moved to the city, he's gone through three set of tires on his car.
"If you're not careful, most likely you'll drop into those pot holes, and it messes up your tires horribly," Nwankwo said.
Still, he was surprised to hear the city is being forced to spend nearly $200,000 of its $500,000 street budget to pave a single road.
A 2.6 mile stretch of Jones Mill Road is currently being paved, from Morningside Drive to where the road dead-ends at the Poole Knob Recreation Area.
The property surrounding that portion of Jones Mill is owned by the Army Corps of Engineers, the state and the federal government, but the city of La Vergne has an easement for a water line running to a youth camp, and is responsible for paving the road.
A letter from the Corps said the city was in breach of its contract, because it wasn't keeping the road maintained, so the city had no choice but to pave.
City officials said they will just to prioritize which other roads get paved next. They said it could take months, or even years to get to them all.
"I try to take the worst of the worst, to get them paved as soon as possible," said La Vergne Public Works Director Garlon Russell. "I promise we are going to get to them. It just may take a couple years more than we thought."
For now, drivers on unpaved streets will be in for a bumpy ride a little while longer.
"The roads in dire need, we try to patch them up with a bandage, I guess you can say, until we get the money to get to them," Russell said.
Russell said the remaining $300,000 in the street budget will be stretched thin, because it will have to be used to pave other streets, patch pot holes, remove snow, replace damaged guardrails and even purchase street signs.
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