By ZACH HARMUTH
The county will host a meeting on Tuesday to begin figuring out creative ways to fund recommended road improvements during the next 15 years.
On Tuesday at 3 p.m. in the auditorium of the Williamson County Administrative Complex, consultants AECOM and McBride Dale Clarion will lead the meeting and explain a fund-finding study they have begun.
Members of the County Commission, Planning Commission and other county officials will take part in the discussion.
Among other avenues, the study will consider a developer fee- much like the Adequate Facilities Tax that the city of Franklin has- that taxes developers for the additional impact their project has on roads and traffic.
A recent traffic study contracted by Williamson County concludes that county roads need more than $130 million in improvements over the next 15 years.
Without the improvements, the study by RPM Traffic Consultants said, level of service on four major county roads would fall below acceptable standards. In other words, doing nothing is not an option.
The problem, of course, is coming up with funding. To that end, the county commission the new study by AECOM to look at ways to fund the roadwork.
“We are going to have our consultants kick off the project and have interested members of county commission attend and we and our consultants will sort of define what we are looking for at the project and talk through a lot of the issues,” said Mike Matteson, Williamson County Planning Department director.
The consultant, which has a local office on 1000 Corporate Center Drive in Franklin, is AECOM- a multinational engineering firm that provides design, consulting, construction, and management services to a wide range of clients.
The incipient study first came up publicly at July’s Highway Commission Meeting.
“There are roadway improvements that are necessary to our long-term transportation plan, but there is not a lot of funding set up to help with that,” said Matteson, planning director, at the meeting. “Over the next nine months we will be working with a consultant to identify some funding sources for these roadway improvements, that likely will include some sort of extraction from developers.”
Matteson said at the meeting that they hope to have results by March 2017.