Riverview Drive washout slated for repair

Published 8:38 am Friday, July 5, 2019

According to Carter County Roads Superintendent Roger Colbaugh plans are in place to repair the washed out portion of Riverview Drive.

The road was closed in February because water from rain had eroded away the underside and started causing the pavement and rails to slide down the embankment. At first, the long narrow road could be crossed on one side, but the damage grows worse as time goes on.

“Back in February…we got so much rain that the water got underneath the roadway between the dirt fill and the solid rock. The water saturated the dirt fill and it started sliding toward the river,” Colbaugh said. “At first, it was only half of the road, but we kept losing more and more of the road.”

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Colbaugh said that when they looked at the damage and at the way it was sliding that it was not a minor repair and would require the services of an engineer.

“We hired Mattern and Craig out of Kingsport to do an engineering design,” said Colbaugh. “The company came in and core drilled to find out where the solid rock was. They used the information gathered during the drill to design a tieback retaining wall.

“We think we are going to use a tieback wall where you dig out as far as you can, and put a concrete footing in that is resting on some kind of piling. The piling is drove down into solid rock which will hold the concrete footing, and on top of that there will be a tieback wall. The reason that they called it that is because there are cables that run from the wall at an angle to the solid rock,” said Colbaugh.

Colbaugh said that the county commission approved $62,000 for the engineering firm to come up with the design.

Colbaugh expects once the final design is finished around the end of July, to be able to start the bidding process for qualified contractors to do the actual work on repairing the road. He projects that it will be late August or early September for the work to start with a two to three month completion period.

The expected cost for the repair could range from $300,000 to $400,000. However, Colbaugh says that the county would be able to recoup 75 percent of the overall costs of repairing the road from a FEMA grant.