Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Broadway Bridge project costing TDOT millions more because of damages

Broadway Bridge
Last week, Jim Matheny and I discovered that the state spent way more for a sliver of land than it was worth.

Here ya go:

A state project to rebuild the small bridge on Broadway Street will cost the Tennessee Department of Transportation millions of dollars for damages to a neighboring company.

The state paid Smith & Hammaker Enterprises more than $5.6 million for a roughly a half acre sliver of land. The property is located beneath and beside the bridge at the northern edge of downtown Knoxville along the Norfolk Southern Railroad line.

But records show the entire 3.6 acre property has an appraised worth of only $1.26 million.

TDOT says it got a fair shake at half the expense of its other option.

Spokesman Mark Nagi said officials weighed whether to buy the entire lot and then relocate the company or buy a piece of it and then "cure (the) damages from project impacts." Nagi said engineers eventually modified the bridge redesign to minimize the cost.

The $5.6 million price tag for the property includes more than the cost of the land. It also includes construction costs.

"We are paying the property owner to demolish part of their building. In this case, we have to have two parts of that building demolished and there are damages for the property owner," said Nagi. "The majority of the money was paid as damages, whereby the property owners could, if they chose, modify their property and building to remain at their current location."

The state needs the land for right-of-way purposes once the bridge, also known as the Broadway viaduct, is replaced.

In the meantime, that leaves more work for Smith & Hammaker, a document and information and management company that bought the property for $2.35 million in March 2005.

The rest of the story RIGHT SMACK HERE.

(Josh Flory over at the Property Scope had a report in which he focused on the business aspect of the deal connected to Smith & Hammaker purchasing the Fort Hill building. You can find it right HERE.)

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