New I-10 rest areas nearing completion

Published 1:03 am Sunday, January 30, 2011

Two rest areas along Interstate 10 near Gautier will soon be renovated totally and open again for highway stops.

The Mississippi Department of Transportation said it expects to have the Gautier rest area that serves eastbound travelers complete in about two months, and the rest area that serves motorists headed west in about three months.

The work includes replacing sidewalks damaged by tree growth and bringing the sites into compliance with federal standards dealing with accessibility for the handicapped. Workers also are replacing lighting and adding landscaping there. The project includes connecting the sites to the county’s sewer system.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

MDOT District 6 Engineer Kelly Castleberry told The Sun Herald that for now, those westbound drivers can stop at another rest area 10 miles to the east at the Alabama state line.

Those drivers who are eastbound encounter a rest area near the Louisiana state line.

Alabama-based Gulf Equipment Co. is handling the $1.1 million job. Castleberry said the rest stops were heavily used, particularly the parking area for tractor-trailers.

The transportation agency also is working on the access road at the welcome center at the NASA Infinity Science Center site in Hancock County. There is about $1.2 million worth of work left, including relocating the existing welcome center road and building a new road.