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Monday, March 5, 2012 - 12:40pm

Hurdles Face Savannah-Knoxville Highway

It looks like the end of the road for a proposed highway from Savannah to Knoxville. Few viable routes and a lack of interest could be the end of the idea.

A newly released feasibility study from the Federal Highway Administration identified four possible routes for the 3rd Infantry Division Highway, which is commonly called Interstate 3.

Officials rejected two of those and the northern portion of a third because they traveled through protected areas and difficult mountainous terrain. The remaining options would cost between $700 million and $6 billion to construct.

“I don’t think we’ll give up on watching it and monitoring it for however long it takes, but I think it ultimately is not going to be built,” said Terry Miller, chairman of grassroots organization WaysSouth, which has been fighting the highway.

The report said neither Georgia’s nor Tennessee’s transportation department has shown much interest in the project.

Miller said the money for the new highway could be better spent.

“We need to move money from building new roads, which people don’t necessarily want, to fixing the infrastructure we have,” he said.

Georgia’s Congressional delegation pushed for the I-3 highway study in 2004 and 2005 along with another road stretching from Augusta to Columbus and Mississippi.

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