Hwys. 58, 72 improvements completed

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The Tennessee Department of Transportation has completed improvements to the intersection of Hwys. 58 and 72 south of Kingston.

TDOT used safety grants to fund work to the intersection, which has been the site of a number of serious and fatal car crashes.

“I am very pleased that the intersection of State Route 72 at State Route 58 has been improved,” said state Sen. Ken Yager, R-Harriman.

Yager was Roane County Executive when he first sought improvements to the road. He was elected to the Tennessee Senate in 2008.

“At the request of many concerned citizens, including former Roane County Commissioners Nadine Jackson and Howard Rose, then-Rep. Dennis Ferguson and I invited TDOT officials to visit the site to examine it first hand.”

Ferguson, who is now Roane County Road Superintendent, represented the county in the Tennessee House of Representatives at the time.

“As a result of these efforts, using Safety Grant funds, upgrades were made improving the safety of the intersection,” said Yager.

“I thank the Department of Transportation for working with Mayor [Ron] Woody and other local officials to complete this necessary improvement. As a result of this cooperative effort, there is no doubt that lives will be saved.”

Improvements to the road included adding a left turn lane on Hwy. 58 and widening Hwy. 72 to accommodate separate left turn lanes. It also includes flashing lights to alert traffic at this intersection.

“The safety measures put into place will make a huge difference in protecting motorists who travel this highway,” said state Rep. Kent Calfee, a Republican from Kingston.

“I appreciate the work that went into this by all who were involved and will continue working with our local officials to help make our roads safer.”

Ferguson added, “These improvements make this intersection safer. I am just very pleased that the project is complete to help protect those who drive through this intersection.”