OXFORD – Add a roundabout to the list of highway projects in Lafayette County’s near future.
Tony Sheffield, MDOT District 2 construction engineer, said the roundabout will be built at State Highway 30 and Campground and Woodson Ridge roads just east of Oxford, the site of several fatal crashes.
“Obviously there’s a need to do something based on the accident history,” he said.
Sheffield said a study last year showed a roundabout would offer the best combination of safety and flow at the intersection, where two stores, a church, a Saturday flea market and thickly settled neighborhoods complicate the traffic.
“We’ve had some funding issues,” Sheffield said. “Right now it’ll probably be mid-2015 before we get to it.”
Several other MDOT projects in Lafayette County are underway or planned as well.
Most pilings have been driven for a higher and wider freespan bridge over the Tallahatchie River on State Highway 7.
“We’ve got everything on the north side of the river up in the air, and we hope to be hanging beams in the next few months,” Sheffield said. “Target date for completion is April of next year.”
State Highway 6/U.S. Highway 278 in Oxford will be the site of two major projects in the immediate future. The Old Taylor Road bridge over the highway will be widened to four lanes and will have roundabouts built at both ends.
Contracting is expected this month, and construction may begin in March.
The dangerous Highway 6/278 intersection with Jackson Avenue will be rebuilt as a Continuous Flow Intersection, an innovative design touted as both faster and safer than the existing tee junction. The contract will be let this spring and work will likely begin in early summer, Sheffield said.
State Highway 328 near Taylor will see several new bridges built starting this summer. Traffic already has to detour on county roads around one bridge. The project will be contracted in March, start work in May and be completed in early 2016, he said.
One ambitious project still a distance away is the four-laning of State Highway 7 South, complete with an interchange aimed at eliminating deadly wrecks at the current junction with State Highway 9W. Sheffield said another two years will be spent in right-of-way acquisition and working with utilities to move their lines.