State Turns Down Old Stone Fort Bridge Preservation Group

In a letter from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), they thank the Old Stone Fort Bridge Preservation Group for its time, effort, and proposal for the preservation of the truss bridge.

In accordance with our mission, TDEC has decided to repurpose the truss bridge as a river overlook upstream from where it is currently located to preserve its rich history and tradition.

As part of that project, staff and interpretive signage will convey its rich history as a former part of Tennessee’s Highway System to park guests overlooking the beautiful Duck River.

TDEC has also determined it is essential to have a vehicular bridge connecting the campground to the main park entrance and ranger station. The truss bridge has documented damage to truss structural members that continue to deteriorate. Rehabilitating the truss bridge for use by

today’s vehicles, especially RVs, are not a practicable option because their original design does not meet modern-day loading or design standards (Load and Resistance Factor Design), which TDOT is required by federal regulation and state policy to meet for vehicular bridges on public roads.

By the nature and age of the materials used on the truss bridge structure, it cannot be repaired to meet those design requirements. This decision will ultimately allow campground guests to be able to access other park amenities more conveniently and safely.

The improvement of Country Club Drive, as called for by your proposal, would fall under the jurisdiction and financial responsibility of Coffee County and the City of Manchester. However, even if additional funding resources were made available to change the traffic pattern, Greer Tidwell Deputy Commissioner said, “I’m confident the path we have chosen is in the best interest of park visitors and will confirm and honor the tradition of the truss bridge while keeping our visitors safe. This decision is consistent with our mission. The letter goes on to say, “Your engagement and collaboration in this matter are highly valued, and we look forward to continuing to work together in the shared interest of keeping Old Stone Fort State Archaeological Park a special place for generations to come.

Lucky Knott

Lucky Knott

One of Southern Tennessee's most experienced and recognized news broadcasters and play-by-play sportscasters. News and Sports Director for Rooster 101.5 FM, 93.9 The Duck and Whiskey Country 105.1, and 95.9. He is currently the play-by-play voice of the Coffee County Red Raiders (31 years) on The Rooster 101.5 and can be heard M-F broadcasting our local news. Lucky has done play-by-play for 3,993 (and counting) sports events on Radio & TV. He also served four years as the Public Information Officer for the Coffee Co. Sheriff's Dept. and taught Radio/TV for six years at Grundy County High School.

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