The Tennessee Department of Transportation has awarded the city of Knoxville a $950,000 grant for creating a pedestrian and bike path on Chapman Highway, according to a city press release. The project is set to begin construction mid-2021.
“This is a section of Chapman Highway where people are walking and biking on a busy, high-speed road, and there is little space outside the traffic lanes,” said Jim Hagerman, city engineering director. “TDOT’s multimodal access grants support transportation needs of transit users, pedestrians and bicyclists through projects that address existing gaps along state routes and access at transit hubs.”
The maximum grant award for the program is $950,000, plus a minimum $50,000 city match, Hagerman said. To make this project successful, the city will contribute a total of $857,895. Chapman Highway is a state and federal highway managed by TDOT.
“Construction of a multi-use path between Stone Road and Woodlawn Pike along Chapman Highway is the most suitable project we have identified for this grant program,” Hagerman said.
The project will extend a sidewalk from the intersection and connect to the existing sidewalk near Young High Pike. It will create pedestrian crossings at three intersections with Chapman Highway: Stone Road, Fronda Lane and Woodlawn Pike. Additionally, the project will improve four Knoxville Area Transit bus stops.
KAT is excited about the project, said Melissa Roberson, interim director of transit for the city of Knoxville. “This is a busy corridor for transit usage, so improving pedestrian and bike access will also prove incredibly beneficial for transit.”
The project will undergo environmental assessment, right-of-way acquisition and final design, Hagerman said.
The project will also include 3,200 feet of multi-use path and 525 feet of sidewalk. Stone Road, Fronda Lane and Woodlawn Pike will be upgraded with pedestrian signals and crosswalks, including a total of seven new crossings.
“Several short sections of sidewalks on the east side of Chapman Highway will be installed, connecting them to destinations such as the South Knoxville Branch Library and adjacent bus stops. The four bus stops on Chapman between Stone Road and Woodlawn will be improved to provide a safe and desirable place to wait for the bus,” Hagerman said.
The Chapman Highway pathway project is expected to be completed in early 2022.