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Canoe access denied by new bridge
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Completion of the new Ernest Crouch Memorial Bridge is sailing along, while the path for canoe access beside it never got its head above water.According to TDOT spokesperson Jennifer Flynn, city of McMinnville officials never submitted paperwork requesting they be allowed to have canoe access beneath Ernest Crouch Memorial Bridge into Big Hickory Creek. The bridge is on Morrison Street near WCHS.Even with the appropriate paperwork, the canoe-access effort would have been fighting against some strong turbulence and would have likely been rejected, says Flynn.“It would most likely have been turned down, though, because of strong opposition from adjacent property owners,” said Flynn. “That may be why the official request was never made by McMinnville.”Concerns raised by at least one adjacent property owner to TDOT was with strangers having access to their property from the public-access area and what could happen as a result of that.City officials began considering canoe access into the river at that location several months ago.

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