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franklin county times

County addresses roadwork projects

The Franklin County Commission announced plans during its May 16 meeting for roadwork improvements and repairs across the county.

HIGHWAY 27 BRIDGE

The Highway 27 bridge remains closed. County engineer David Palmer reported he has received a quote from Shotcrete for its repair; however, he said the company has undertaken a big job in Florence and might not be able to get to the project until August.

The commission originally voted to close the 24-foot bridge, located south of Vina and west of Hodges, during its Nov. 15 meeting this past year, per the recommendation for immediate closure by the county bridge inspector, Anthony Gardner, with cited reasons from the inspection crew including rust and corrosion in the piles.

Regarding the proposed repairs under discussion, Palmer said he’s “not totally comfortable,” noting he has “a couple of concerns” about the method of repair planned and wants to discuss that with Shotcrete before things move forward.

He added that even after the bridge is repaired, although it will be usable, it will be on a use-at-your-own-risk basis.

He also noted that if the project goes above the bid law amount of $50,000, it will have to be bid out. It’s currently at about $43,000.

The Commission voted to give Palmer authority to work out the details about the bridge repair and report back to them with his findings.

FY 2022 COUNTY TRANSPORTATION PLAN AWARD

The low bid for the FY 2022 county transportation plan award for Lost Creek Road and County Road 59 came in at $1,224,414.24 from Midsouth Paving.

HIGHWAY 75 AND HIGHWAY 724

During the commission’s work session May 9, Commissioner Chris Wallace noted there have been several fatalities where Highway 75 crosses Highway 724.

“We’ve been out there, and there’s not anything glaring that makes me think there ought to be these accidents happening,” explained Palmer during the commission’s May 16 meeting.

“We’re going to install the biggest stop sign you can get, with solar warning lights, as well as add “Stop Ahead” signs. Maybe by putting these improvements in, we can help mitigate the issue. We’ll also put rumble strips on both sides.”

Palmer explained prices have already been obtained, noting it will take an estimated three to five weeks to get everything in. He asked the commissioners if they would also like rumble strips added near a cornfield where there have been accidents, and they voted in favor of this plan.

HIGHWAY 70

Highway 70 is both Franklin County’s and Marion County’s problem – or at least, it has been for decades. Palmer said Highway 70 “dips in and out of both counties.” “For 30 years, Marion County has kept up the west side, and Franklin County has kept up the east side,” Palmer said. Now, however, Palmer said Marion County has decided it is no longer going to work the west side.

He said a document of mutual agreement was drafted and sent to Marion County; however, they voted it down.

“The only way I know to fix this is to have someone come and survey the county line, and we’ve gotten a price to do that if that’s what you want to do,” Palmer explained.

The commission voted in favor of having Palmer get the road surveyed to determine which parts are in Franklin County and which parts are in Marion County.

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