Most state road money going to ongoing projects

Published 11:29 am Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Road maintenance money from the state for new items on Warren County’s road and bridge repair list has increased for the new year, but much of it will go to work already under way.

Funds for Warren County from the Office of State Aid Road Construction totaled $2,194,720 this fiscal year, up 41 percent since last year.

Much of it will roll over to finance design of 12 projects added to the drawing board and three already under construction and leave a $481,054 balance, according to the update that accompanied a four-year plan for road and bridge construction projects.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

Items often appear on more than four annual updates consecutively, depending on condition ratings and how many of roads and bridges are inspected each year. Roads maintained exclusively with county funds are expected to be rated this year, though a full slate of routine paving and lane striping has not been finalized.

“It’s not set in concrete,” County Engineer John McKee said, presenting the plan to county supervisors Monday. “It’s just a plan to go by.”

New on the list of “state aid” projects is work to replace four small bridges across creeks, including two on Old Highway 27 — one at the city limits, and another near Simmons Road. Bridges new to the list also include one on Freetown Road at Muddy Creek and on Cairo Drive.

Other items involve paving parts of Eagle Lake Shore at Eagle Lake and Fisher Ferry Road and striping major thoroughfares on the office’s system list, such as Mississippi 27.

In the design phase are small bridges on Avenue D, Wood Street and Baldwin Ferry Road, and the reconstruction of Henry Lake Road, where the cost grew to $671,000 this year, according to the update.

State-financed work started last year to install new bridges on Fisher Ferry Road at the Big Black River and on Bazinsky Road remain in progress, as is resurfacing on Bovina Cutoff Road from Warriors Trail to Silver Creek.

The 1.26 percent of available state funds allocated locally, based on county size and population, stops a five-year slide but is smaller than last year’s 1.32 percent cut.

New roads on the county’s maintenance list this year were West Ceres Boulevard, Bradbury Drive, Hynes Street, Knowland Place and Wrenn Street, all in Eastvillage subdivision.

Eight roads were accepted by citizen-led special property assessments — Pebble Beach Drive, Grand Bear Circle, Monteray Drive, Sawgrass Point, Manchester Drive, Hunters Crest Circle, Andover Circle and Amberleaf Drive.

OSARC is a state-supported entity that assists counties to maintain roads and bridges and administers the Local System Bridge Program, which pays for replacing deficient bridges but leaves out those on municipal urban systems.

It operates out of the Mississippi Department of Transportation offices in Jackson, but has its own staff and chief engineer.