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Drivers Discuss Possible Shelby Farms Parkway

Does Memphis need a new road near Shelby Farms? The roads around the park are known trouble spots to drivers. This week the public will get a chance to vent frustrations and discuss solutions, particularly the proposed Shelby Farms Parkway.
MEMPHIS, TN -- Does Memphis need a new road near Shelby Farms? The roads around the park are known trouble spots to drivers. This week the public will get a chance to vent frustrations and discuss solutions, particularly the proposed Shelby Farms Parkway.

It is a $20 million dollar project that would skirt the park and relieve congestion, particularly at the intersection of Walnut Grove Road and Farm Road. It's one of the worst bottlenecks if you get caught at the wrong time.

40-60,000 people drive by the Shelby Farms section of Walnut Grove every day. It's a mess early in the morning and late in the afternoon at rush hour. The new road would let many drivers bypass the intersection.

When you talk about building another road near Shelby Farms though, people get concerned.

"I would like to find out about that because I think if they alter and change the landscape a lot that's not a good idea," says Ann Marie Ruhland.

"A lot of traffic is here," says Don Foster. "It's real congested down at the red light. I'd hate to wait in line."

On the weekend, traffic isn't terrible. But during the week, expect to wait.

"Rush hour traffic going to and from work is a problem for me," says Sarah Kribs.

"In the morning it's very bad so I don't drive in the morning," adds Hisham Gnedy.

The proposed Shelby Farms Parkway is four lanes and two and a half miles long.

It would connect Walnut Grove and Whitten Roads, giving drivers another way to get around Shelby Farms without driving down Farm Road.

"I looked at the plans," Gnedy says. "I feel it will be a great relief to this area."

Plans incorporate new walking and biking trails. Construction would begin in 2017.

"I like it the way it is right now, but I don't drive back and forth everyday. I don't run into the traffic," Foster says.

"As long as it doesn't take away from the park that would be fine," Ruhland says.

"The park is huge and beautiful as it is," says Teddy Kribs. "I can't see how one road will impact it that much. If it's going to make it a smoother commute I'm all for it."

The public hearing is from 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, September 24th at the Agricenter.

TDOT is presenting plans and releasing results of an environmental impact study.

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