Crosstown opening may be delayed

Thomas Wells | Buy at photos.djournal.com BNSF Railway workers begin repairing the rail crossing at Crosstown on Saturday.

Thomas Wells | Buy at photos.djournal.com
BNSF Railway workers begin repairing the rail crossing at Crosstown on Saturday.

By Sheena Barnett

Daily Journal

TUPELO – It could take an extra day for Crosstown to reopen.

The intersection at Main and Gloster streets has been shut down since about 6 a.m. Saturday so BNSF Railway could repair loose railroad tracks.

BNSF completed its work at about 1:30 p.m. Sunday, said Chuck Williams, interim Tupelo Public Works director, but the Public Works Department needs to lay asphalt to complete the job.

“It’s our turn (today) to put the asphalt back in, but I don’t think the rain is going to let us do that,” he said.

The asphalt can’t be laid down if it’s raining or has been raining for a while.

If it rains all of tonight, as it’s forecasted to do, that could push Crosstown’s reopening back to Tuesday. Crosstown was originally scheduled to open up sometime today.

“We’re expecting better weather on Tuesday,” Williams said. “We’re just at the mercy of the weather. All we can do is leave it closed down. It’s still not safe to cross.”

Drivers made it around the closed intersection on a busy weekend.

The circus at the BancorpSouth Arena, the inaugural NOleput festival and the Color Vibe 5k run were all in downtown Tupelo, but no accidents related to the shutdown were reported.

“Everything’s been going great,” said Sgt. Tim Bell with the Tupelo Police Department. “We’ve had no problems whatsoever. It hasn’t impeded pedestrian or emergency traffic.”

Intersections around Crosstown were busier than usual with rerouted traffic, but Bell said traffic at those intersections ran a steady, if a bit slower, pace.

Williams has kept the city’s Public Works Department Facebook page updated throughout the weekend with news and pictures of the work.

sheena.barnett@journalinc.com