Relief in Germantown traffic nightmares in sight - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Relief in Germantown traffic nightmares in sight

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Have you driven down Poplar Avenue or Farmington Road in Germantown lately?

Let us rephrase that.

Have you been stuck in traffic on Poplar Avenue or Farmington Road in Germantown lately?

"It's just senseless. It's a waste of taxpayer money and it is a major inconvenience," said Walker Taylor of Germantown Commissary.

For more than a year, Germantown residents and visitors to the city have had to deal with major roadway construction on these two stretches of road.

"Whenever I can, most of the construction that is going on here, just to get to Starbucks is, it delays your day so I avoid it," said Richard Rossetti, Germantown resident.

"It's an inconvenience," added Emil Orth, also of Germantown. "It seems like it would be completed by now. I mean it goes on and on and on. You hardly ever see anyone out there working."

With the busy end of the year holiday shopping season weeks away, the question remains: when will the construction stop?

The $4.5 million, 18-month lane widening and repaving project is off schedule. A 10-year-old study was used when they started the project realized the roads had been paved over twice and they had to go back and start over because of it.

"It probably took me four minutes to get from there to here, maybe 50 yards," Rossetti said.

Business owners have been bracing for the impact the construction will have on their bottom line.

"Our customers are avoiding the area and taking alternative routes and going to other businesses outside of Germantown," said Lacey Doughner of The Winery of Germantown. "It hurts the whole community because it takes away our tax revenue."

"I'd rather go up Germantown Parkway or take a back road into Memphis and do my business," Orth added.

The project has taken longer than the Tennessee Department of Transportation expected, but there is relief in sight. Starting at noon on Nov. 21, all lanes will be open and construction will be halted until Monday, Nov. 26, giving motorists a break during the Thanksgiving holiday.

TDOT Community Relations Officer Nichole Lawrence told FOX13 News the main construction on the project should be completed in time for the December holiday rush. Drivers will also see a much improved roadway.

"There will be three lanes in each direction for Black Friday and we encourage them to go out and buy and spend tax dollars in the city of Germantown," Lawrence said.

"I'm a resident of Germantown," Rossetti said. "I am glad that they are spending the money to fix the roads so we have nice roads. I'm thankful for that."

Business owners, though, said they will believe it when they see it.

"We were told that it was going to be mostly done before the holiday starts, and it's still lingering," Taylor said. "What's so frustrating is you come out and see lanes that are blocked off but nothing is being done."

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