Study: Half Of Metro's Streets In Poor Shape - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Study: Half Of Metro's Streets In Poor Shape

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by Mark Bellinger

NASHVILLE, Tenn.- A study of Metro roads shows the city has a lot of work to do, 47% of the streets in Nashville graded out as poor.

In 2011 Metro has been providing more money for street maintenance, but it's not nearly enough.
"I don't know what the deal is, but I know the streets are a mess.  There's a lot of damage to your car," said one driver on Patterson Street in downtown Nashville.

A recent study prepared by Applied Research Associates for the city shows nearly half of Metro's 57,000 lane miles of roads are in poor condition.

"Oh, man they're awful.  They are really awful around here.  Driving around here trying to deliver these flowers, it's pitiful," said the driver of an Emma's Flowers delivery van.

Metro Public Works director Billy Lynch blames potholes and other deteriorating conditions on two bad winters and the 2010 flood.

The city has been paying a price. Metro's legal department said damaged vehicle claims because of roads have more than doubled in the last two years.

The results of the study don't surprise Lynch. The research group looked at half of Metro's roads this year.
"This year the roadways being evaluated included that were heavies hit by the flood," said Lynch

FEMA helped rebuild some of those roads, but not all of them.

A review of funding levels shows in the last ten years Metro has under funded the street maintenance program.

Lynch said he needs $20 million a year to keep all of the city's roads in tip top shape, but on average Metro Council has funded just $6.5 million.

It's $12 million this year, but that's still way under funded and it means more rough rides for motorists. 

Lynch said the roads grading out as poor are not dangerous, they're still safe to ride on.


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