Culton Creek Greenway named state Project of Year
By Iva Butler | (email@example.com)
The city of Alcoa’s Culton Creek Greenway extension has been named the 2012 Tennessee Public Works Project of the Year by the Tennessee Chapter of the American Public Works Association.
A local presentation of the award was made at the Alcoa City Commission meeting Tuesday night.
The award is for the design and construction by city personnel of the 1.1-mile trail, which runs west of the pedestrian bridge over the U.S. 129 Bypass, meanders along Culton Creek and follows Louisville Road to Andover Subdivision and Green Meadow United Methodist Church.
The trail includes a 0.45-mile section through the Culton Creek floodplains and wetlands, and features 133 feet of elevated boardwalk.
Another 0.66-mile is a combination of 10-foot-wide asphalt trail and a concrete sidewalk along Louisville Road.
“The trail was constructed totally by public works crews, except for curbs and paving,” said Alcoa Public Works Superintendent Kenny Wiggins.
Alcoa Electric Department crews installed the lighting.
The 11-year project required perseverance by city staff. “It took nine years to get a CSX permit (to go underneath a railroad trestle),” Wiggins said. “They had to erect a debris shield.”
“I think it is a wonderful project,” said Alcoa Mayor Don Mull. “A lot of people use that trail. It’s a real asset to our community.”
“There’s a lot of wildlife there,” added Commissioner Ken White, who bikes the Greenway Trails. “I saw a deer, a red fox and two otters (the other day).”
The trail links the west side of the city that had no Greenway Trail, giving 1,500 homes access to it.
Eighty percent of the $551,189 cost of project was paid for through a Tennessee Department of Transportation Surface Transportation Program grant, with the local match 20 percent.
City crews juggled the project around citywide maintenance responsibilities, beginning the work in December 2010. The ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Nov. 17, 2011.
Accepting the award were city engineer Andrew Sonner, street supervisor James Trusty and labor lead worker two Chipper Wyatt. The official presentation was made last month at the association’s statewide meeting in Memphis. Others accepting the award in Memphis were service worker two Andy Davis and utility equipment operators Paul Monroe and Brandon Ion.
The Culton Creek project will be the state’s nominee for the 2013 American Public Works Association Top Ten Projects of the Year that will be announced at the national conference in August in Chicago.
This is the third Project of the Year award Alcoa has received from the state public works group. The others were for the Alcoa Water Plant and Service Center.