MDOT outlines improvement projects

By Errol Castens/NEMS Daily Journal

Major thoroughfare construction to funnel traffic through and around New Albany and Booneville are among the highway projects that the Mississippi Department of Transportation has slated for this year.
The $18 million project to widen state Highway 15 from King’s Creek south of New Albany to the Northaven community near the northern city limits will continue throughout the construction season and into next year. Completion for the expansion to five lanes is scheduled for July 2012.
“We’re about to let for bid in March a section just north of this,” said Jamie McDonald, assistant engineer for construction in MDOT’s District 1, which is headquartered in Tupelo. “The bridge work at the Tallahatchie River is going on right now.”
The bypass around Booneville’s south side is expected to be completed and opened to traffic in late June. The new eight-mile, four-lane highway will connect from State Highway 145 at Wheeler to State Highway 30 east of Booneville. The $19.1 million project is in the paving-and-signage stage.
In Pontotoc and Lee counties, the grading, drainage and bridge work on a relocated State Highway 6 is scheduled for completion by year’s end. With a price tag of $29.3 million, the project goes from near the Natchez Trace Parkway to its tie-in with State Highway 145 in south Tupelo.
Once the grade-drain-bridge work is finished, a paving project will complete the road and enable motorists to drive from Batesville to Tupelo on a four-lane road.
Also in Lee County, the construction of an interchange at Euclatubba Road and U.S. Highway 45 at Saltillo is about 78 percent completed. Completion is scheduled for April.
Contact Errol Castens at (662) 281-1069 or errol.castens@journalinc.com.