JACKSON, MISS. – The Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) has released updates to projects in Central Mississippi, announced Commissioner Dick
Hall, Central Transportation District and chair, Mississippi Transportation Commission (MTC).
“The majority of current Central Mississippi projects focus on system maintenance and preservation,” Hall said. “This shows MDOT’s continued shift from
new capacity projects due to a lack of available funding.”
Safety improvement projects in Rankin and Madison counties
The U.S. Highway 49 Infrastructure Improvement Project in Rankin County is currently on schedule. Crews are installing permanent drainage structures that
run perpendicular to U.S. Highway 49. Lane widening on the temporary inside lane is ongoing, and reconstruction of the outside lanes is underway. Work
also continues on two new bridges – one just south of State Route 469 and one just north of Lyle Machinery.
The construction of a temporary lane is required to have two lanes of traffic open at all times. However, MDOT made the decision to forgo a temporary lane
and construct a new lane in each direction. The new lanes will save taxpayers the cost of building and removing a temporary travel lane and, once the
project is complete, these new lanes will decrease congestion along this heavily traveled corridor from Jackson to the Gulf Coast.
“This is a large project, and lane closures will be required in order to complete it in a timely manner,” Hall said. “However, in an effort to cause as
little inconvenience as possible to motorists, MDOT has strict requirements on when those lane closures can take place.”
Phase 1 began in November 2017. MDOT anticipates all phases of the project will be complete by fall 2020. Yates Construction of Philadelphia was awarded
the approximately $150 million contract.
“Although the primary purpose of the project is pavement rehabilitation, the traveling public will have the added benefit of another lane in each direction,”
Hall said. “Once complete, the project will provide an improved travel experience and increase efficiency for commercial vehicles moving goods and
services throughout the region.”
MDOT recently began the first phase of a project that will ultimately relieve peak drive time congestion on Interstate 55 in Madison County.
“There is a bottleneck that develops during peak drive times on I-55 northbound entering Madison County,” Hall said. “This project will widen the interstate
and relieve the current bottleneck, which will decrease congestion and drive times while improving safety for the traveling public.”
The approximately $12.3 million project was awarded to Key Constructors, LLC, of Madison, and will widen, mill and overlay I-55 northbound from County
Line Road to the Natchez Trace Parkway. The project will also widen the I-55 northbound bridge under the bridge to I-220 southbound.
The project will also address drainage issues on the West Frontage Road between Old Agency Road and Steed Road by removing and replacing existing curb
and gutter. Lane closures will be necessary to perform this work. Additionally, the west end of Old Agency Road through the roundabout at Renaissance
shopping center to the end of state maintenance.
“The work taking place around Renaissance is underway and is scheduled to be complete before Thanksgiving and the holiday shopping season begins,” said
The work on I-55 is not expected to begin until after the work on the West Frontage Road is complete. However, the traveling public will begin seeing construction
signs placed along I-55 in preparation for work to begin.
Once work begins on I-55, lane closures will be necessary. Most lane closures will occur at night to reduce the impact to traffic.
“This project will significantly reduce congestion and increase safety on a heavily traveled section of I-55 in the Jackson-Metro area,” Hall said. “We
ask for the traveling public’s patience as this project progresses and urge motorists to exercise extreme caution by slowing down and avoiding distractions
in construction zones.”
MDOT expects the entire project to be complete by fall 2020.
Economic development projects in Hinds and Madison counties
Work continues on Interstate 20 at the Norrell Road interchange in Hinds County. This project will provide needed interchange improvements for the new
Continental Tire plant. The project will provide new geometry for the interchange, and realign and widen the frontage and local roads. The bridge on
I-20 eastbound has been widened on the north side, and crews are currently widening the bridge on the south side. New box culvert construction is also
“A strong economy depends on a strong transportation network,” said Hall. “This project will help boost economic growth and development not only locally,
but also throughout the region.”
MDOT continues work on the U.S. Highway 51/ I-55 Colony Park Boulevard Connector Project from Sunnybrook Road to McClellan Drive in Ridgeland. This is
phase two of the I-55 Split Diamond Project and will reduce congestion and improve safety throughout the area. In addition to improving safety, this
vital connector will foster economic growth and development in Madison County.
Eutaw Construction Company Inc. was awarded the approximately $10.4 million contract and started work in September 2017. MDOT anticipates the project will
be complete in late fall 2018. However, the portion of the project across the railroad will not be open to traffic until the railroad company installs
a new signal at the crossing.
“This portion of Madison County is one of the fastest growing areas in the Jackson Metro,” Hall said. “This project will provide new businesses wishing
to locate in this area direct access to U.S. Highway 51 and I-55.”
Central Mississippi Bridge replacement and repair projects
“A vital component to any transportation system is its bridges,” said Hall. “Bridge replacement and repair projects increase connectivity and safety on
Mississippi’s highway system.”
Tanner Construction Company, of Laurel, was awarded an approximately $4.1 million contract for the replacement of two bridges on State Route 488 between
State Route 35 and the Neshoba County line in Leake County. MDOT expects the project to be complete early summer 2019.
MDOT progresses on a project to provide new structural protection to all of the steel elements on a bridge on U.S. Highway 51 over the Big Black River
in Madison County. The approximately $830,000 project will remove all rust and existing paint and repaint the bridge’s steel members.
Joe McGee Construction Company, Inc., of Flowood, was awarded an approximately $3.1 million contract for the replacement of a bridge on State Route 493
near State Route 495 in Lauderdale County. The project also consists of realigning State Routes 493 and 495 to improve sight distance. Once complete,
traffic will be shifted to the new alignment and the existing bridge and roadway will be removed. The expected completion is mid-winter.
Central Mississippi Pavement Rehabilitation
With MDOT’s shift to system maintenance and preservation, numerous pavement rehabilitation projects are underway throughout Central Mississippi.
Dickerson & Bowen, Inc., of Brookhaven, continues a paving project on I-55 northbound from the Rankin County line to the Ridgeland city limits. The
project will mill and overlay the existing lanes of I-55, frontage roads, crossing routes and ramps to I-220. The project will also remove and replace
guardrail sections and install shoulder barrier walls for Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) compliance. The approximately $24 million project is
expected to be complete by mid-November.
Dickerson & Bowen, Inc. recently began a project to mill and overlay three miles of State Route 13 from the Simpson County line to State Route 18 in
Rankin County. The approximately $1 million project also includes rumble strip and guardrail installation. MDOT expects the project to be complete
Work is nearing completion for a 15 mille mill and overlay project on State Route 19 from the beginning of state maintenance to the Winston County line
in Neshoba County. The approximately $3.7 million contract was awarded to Dickerson & Bowen, Inc.
Work is progressing on a 10 mile mill and overlay project on U.S. Highway 80 from the Scott County line to Scanlan Street in Newton County. W.E. Blain
& Sons, Inc., of Mt. Olive, was awarded the approximately $4.3 million contract. MDOT expects the project to be complete by late spring 2019.
“Safety is MDOT’s top priority,” said Hall. “We ask for the traveling public’s patience as our crews work to improve Mississippi’s transportation network.
Slow down and avoid distractions when approaching and traveling through work zones.”
Work zones present new traffic patterns and configurations that may be unfamiliar to motorists. For information about how to navigate highway work zones
safely, visit GoMDOT.com/drivesmartms<http://www.gomdot.com/drivesmartms>.
For more information about these or other MDOT maintenance and construction projects, visit MDOTtraffic.com<http://www.mdottraffic.com/>,
call Mississippi 511, download the free MDOT Traffic app or like and follow @MississippiDOT on Facebook<https://www.facebook.com/MississippiDOT>
1. U.S. Highway 49 Safety Improvement Project in Rankin County<https://file-exchange.mdot.state.ms.us/dl/?f=0e4c1072866a32865a19afefea277fc4ee3c1426>
2. Interstate 20 at Norrell Road Interchange in Hinds County<https://file-exchange.mdot.state.ms.us/dl/?f=872233f071954f1a9f57ecc6401da79b6a5a2fe0>
3. I-55-U.S. Highway 51 Connector in Madison County<https://file-exchange.mdot.state.ms.us/dl/?f=2fd8729356fc799879344082f09c0fa7f7a83ea5>
The Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) is responsible for providing a safe intermodal transportation network that is planned, designed, constructed
and maintained in an effective, cost-efficient and environmentally sensitive manner. MDOT’s objective is to maximize taxpayer’s dollars by providing
a safe, efficient multimodal network that enhances economic stability and growth. For more information, visit GoMDOT.com.