Lewis County Herald - Serving Hohenwald, Lewis County Tennessee Since 1898

By Becky Jane Newbold
Managing Editor 

City planners review hydrology study of Edgefield subdivision


August 6, 2020

Hohenwald’s Planning Commission convened Monday, where Darrell James, of James & Associates shared information the engineering firm prepared in the Risner Development Project Review.

During the discussion, as the development is planned by John Risner and Greg Amacher, Chairman John Risner left the chair, handing the meeting over to Secretary Don Barber.

Mr. James, hired by the City of Hohenwald, reviewed a hydrology study created by Mr. Risner’s engineer, Braden Hinson, and provided feedback to the Planning Commission. All members were present with the exception of Ben Floyd. Vice Chair Eddie DeNicolais was late, thus the secretary conducted that portion of the meeting.

Several residents of the Edgefield subdivision were in attendance.

The plan to build additional houses in the subdivision prompted residents to remind the City of drainage and flooding issues created when the area was developed, prior to City codes.

Storm water is to be addressed to accommodate flooding, Mr. James indicated, caused by lack of proper drainage relative to the lot sizes and the large amounts of impervious surfaces.

Advised was to increase drainage in some areas from 15 inches to 18-20 inches and sanitary sewer would require additional study.

Barber, who is the Vice Mayor serving on the Planning Commission as a member of the Council, pledged his support of correcting a connector road. The new development, with the adoption by the City of a driveway maintained by property owners, will allow an additional ingress/egress for the subdivision.

Property owners have struggled to maintain the expense of the drive for many years as improper drainage has resulted in flooding. It has been argued the drive should have been developed as a road, but was not.

Other members of the Hohenwald City Council, Scottie Bass and Cody Mitchell, who were attending the meeting, also pledged to support the City’s adoption of the drive as part of the City street system.

By adopting the street, garbage trucks, school buses and emergency vehicles would have better access. Property owners would also have a second exit in the case of blocked roadways.

Members of the Commission advised Risner to return with a preliminary plat with all drainage easements and other engineering adjustments made.

Mr. Risner assured the Commission, and those in attendance, the road would be bonded and proper drainage would be installed. He further offered to correct an existing drainage problem in the curve of the road to keep additional storm water runoff away from property owned by Mike and Tammy Morey, the landowners who have born the burden of driveway/road maintenance. Both were in attendance.

On the other side of Edgefield, surveys were reported completed and water run off had been accessed by Mr. James. His recommendation was to add storm drainage in the street and to meet with neighbors in the area to determine their cooperation in adding downspouts, which would further alleviate the water problems.

The number of small lots and the amount of impervious surfaces exacerbate the amount of storm water and its impact on homes, especially that of Lori McKinney, in attendance, whose property is at the lowest point.

Discussed was the addition of a swale on the south west side and potential drainage behind houses, if homeowners were agreeable.

Other business

In New Business, Michael Creasey requested the subdivision of a lot at 789 Smith Avenue. A motion to approve, contingent on the adjacent property being approved by the Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA), was made by Barber, seconded by Connie Sharp met with unanimous approval.

Planner Jim Lech advised that the other property owner, Carol Creasey, would need to request a variance of the BZA for the lot to be certified by the Planning Commission.

A request was made by Bobby Williams to determine whether a lot at 107 Edge Street was suitable for building. Barber recommended the determination be delayed until the hydrology study was finalized, in an effort to prevent further drainage problems.

A motion to table was made by Sharp, seconded by Steve Keeton and met unanimous approval, with Risner abstaining.

A report of the Building Codes Enforcer Brad Rasbury was accepted unanimously.

Others attending the meeting were Mayor Danny McKnight, Chief of Police Kip Kelsey, EC&D Coordinator Helen Ozier, Kevin Baker, Paula Dyer, Bill Dyer, Stephanie Keeton, Braden Hinson, Clasha Tanner and this reporter.


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