TDOT and local municipalities have been pushing for Pellissippi Parkway to extend from Maryville Pike/Knoxville Hwy (SR 33) to Lamar Alexander Highway/US 321(SR 73). The "proposed extension would be approximately 4.4 miles."

As reported in The Daily Times of Maryville,

  • In September, 2015, the TDOT Environmental Impact Statement estimated the cost would be $165.7 million.
  • In April, 2017, the Knoxville Transportation Planning Organization Mobility Plan estimated the cost would be $194.2 million.
  • In August, 2017, TDOT reported to FHWA the estimated cost would be $63.5 million.
  • In September, 2017, TDOT reported a new estimated cost of $61.1 million.

Read the full report in The Daily Times. TDOT does try to explain how a road plan estimated cost can drop from $165.7 million to $61.1 million in two years. It appears TDOT has changed methods on how they estimate road project costs.

“It became apparent to TDOT planners and engineers that the [per-mile estimation] method did not provide many customization options for the proposed roadway features that could significantly affect the cost of a project such as roadway and shoulder widths, earthwork, bridges and retaining walls,” [TDOT Community Relations Officer Mark] Nagi said. “TDOT engineers suggested that the results did not provide the level of accuracy needed to compare different project alternatives, and proposed that the department investigate alternative estimation methods at the planning level.”

Huh.

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