Sewer replacement projects on McKee Street and Tusculum Boulevard are nearing completion.
The project to replace two aging sewer lines under McKee Street with a single line is almost finished, except for fixing one of the manholes and paving around it, Water Department Engineer Eric Frye reported to the Water Commission on Wednesday.
Once all the work is finished, the entire street will be repaved, Frye said. Brad Peters, Greeneville town engineer and director of the Public Works Department, has indicated the street department can pave the roadway, but has not yet submitted an estimate for the cost.
Work is also nearing completion on Tusculum Boulevard, where a 100-year-old sewer line is being replaced from near the Ye Olde Towne Gate at Sevier Avenue to the new Walters State Community College building at Main Street.
While it was expected that the line would have be to dug up for the entire length from under the center of the street, crews have been able to replace a section of the line in the area of Greeneville High School without tearing up the roadway there, Frye said.
Tusculum Boulevard will also be repaved, but the Public Works Department has indicated that it cannot do that project, he continued. That paving project will have to be bid out to private contractor.
As state routes, both will have to be repaved according to Tennessee Department of Transportation standards.
An emergency repair of the sewer line break on Old Tusculum Road has been completed, Frye said. Commission members expressed concern about the roughness of the patch over the repair area and asked the department to check into what else could be done to make the road smoother.
In other business, the board reviewed preliminary budget information for the 2019-20 fiscal year.
Greeneville Water Superintendent Laura White explained that more information needs to be collected to prepare the final budget document, which the commission will consider for approval at its June meeting.
Planned capital projects next year include continued installation of a new ultraviolet filtration system at the wastewater plant, continued sewer line rehabilitation, and replacement of water and sewer lines on Depot Street in conjunction with the town’s downtown redevelopment initiatives.
The cost of replacing lines on Depot Street has been preliminarily estimated at $1 million, and it would take a two-year period. Commissioner Joe Waggoner asked about the return on the investment for the project.
White said that the project differs a little bit from the installation of new lines to serve a new business or residential development is it involves existing infrastructure.
“Regardless of what happens with downtown redevelopment, the lines are over 100 years old and will need to be replaced,” she said.
Frye said it will be best if the water and sewer lines are replaced before other planned streetscape improvements are completed so that the the sidewalks and street won’t need to be disturbed for utility work for several years into the future.
A man whose body was found Sunday night in the Nolichucky River was identified Thursday as 26-year-old Wade Garrett Gilland.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation identified him through fingerprints, Sheriff Wesley Holt said.
An autopsy at the William L. Jenkins Forensic Center at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City found that drowning was the cause of death.
The body was discovered about 7:30 p.m. Sunday about a mile upriver from the boat ramp at Birds Bridge on Old Asheville Highway. It had been in the water for at least several days and possibly up to a week, Holt said.
Fingerprints were sent to the TBI lab.
Preliminary autopsy results “revealed no significant trauma, meaning no sharp or blunt force injuries were found,” a news release Holt issued Thursday said.
“The Greene County Sheriff’s Department extends our sympathies to Mr. Gilland’s family, who has been notified of the forensic center’s findings,” the release said.
A relative of Gilland said Thursday he had been homeless for about a year and stayed primarily in the Camp Creek and Greystone communities, including one site near the Jones Bridge river boat landing.
Gilland was last seen alive on the morning of May 22 walking on Jones Bridge Road, she said.
The last contact Wade Gilland had with his family was on the night of May 21, the family member said. Although he was homeless, he maintained regular contact with the family, she said.
Gilland went to Camp Creek Elementary School and also attended South Greene High School. He was well-known in the community, the relative said.
The family will receive friends on Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m. at Kiser-Rose Hill Funeral Home. A memorial service will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday in the chapel at Kiser-Rose Hill Funeral Home. (For more details, see Obituaries on page 6A.)