Sorry but just saw this post today. The Shields Creek project was originally proposd by Dave Bishop (TWRA) many years ago(70's). Dave was a friend of mine and we talked about this several times. The last time it came up a private group (Cherokee Lake Users Group) proposed to do the project. They were going to build the levee and water control structure and turn it over to TWRA to operate. That got around a lot of problems. They started on the water control device, then quit. I know TWRA looked at doing it themselves. A guy who owned a large construction company volunteered to haul the dirt for TWRA for nothing. Grainger County Industrial Park was going to allow TWRA to get the dirt there for nothing.
TDOT required the levee to be built off of their R-O-W and wasn't happy with the idea of Pan Haulers hauling down 2-lane 11-W. A local landowner didn't want the equipment hauling the dirt to cross him, Bean Station Utility wanted their utilities relocated at no cost, TDEC wanted a permit fee for TWRA to build the levee, TVA wanted $'s for lost power production and flood storage, so TWRA had to drop the project. Basically the same thing happened when TWRA looked at doing the same thing at Poor Valley Creek. Good ideas that couldn't be done.