Milligan Highway intersection will feature a new traffic signal and additional lanes

Published 9:15 am Thursday, July 27, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...
Star Correspondent
A busy Milligan Highway intersection used by many Carter County residents will soon feature a new traffic signal and additional lanes to help ease congestion.
Summers-Taylor Inc. began work in the spring at the intersection of Milligan Highway and Twin Oaks Drive in Johnson City, not far from the county line, according to the Tennessee Department of Transportation. The project is expected to be completed by Sept. 30, and the contract amount is $872,248.86, TDOT spokesman Mark Nagi said.
Construction crews are adding an additional outbound lane to Twin Oaks Drive and installing a traffic signal at the intersection, Nagi said. The crews have been adjusting the entrance to the nearby Shell gas station and Dunkin restaurant, as well as milling and paving on Milligan Highway.
The project remains on schedule to be completed on or before the contract completion date, Nagi said Wednesday.
“We did have a slight delay in the signal footers, due to differing subsurface conditions than initially expected,” Nagi said.
The contract made the necessary adjustments and was able to get back to work, he said. Signal footers were poured Wednesday.
“Once they have achieved strength, we will be able to complete the signal install, mill, pave, and restripe the roadway,” he said.
Travelers should use caution while traveling on Milligan Highway and be aware of new pavement markings at the intersection.
The construction project comes after the city of Johnson City submitted an application to TDOT requesting funding from the State Industrial Access Program.
The Industrial Highway Act of 1959 authorizes TDOT to contract with cities and counties for the development of industrial highways, such as Milligan Highway, to provide access to industrial areas and to facilitate the development and expansion of industry in Tennessee.
The intersection serves nearby LPI Inc., a local hot tub manufacturer with several hundred employees. LPI Inc is located on Twin Oaks Drive and uses Milligan Highway and U.S. Highway 321 to access Interstate 26.
“The industry uses Twin Oaks Drive to get access to Milligan Highway and the intersection of these two roads is where Milligan Highway transitions from a four-lane to a two-lane section, making it difficult for truck traffic exiting the industry,” Nagi said.
More than 12,000 vehicles pass through the intersection every day, TDOT traffic count data shows. It connects U.S. Highway 321 and Interstate 26 with Milligan University and the Happy Valley area of Carter County. Records from the city of Johnson City show there were four right-angle crashes reported at the intersection in 2022.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox