County could miss out on future MDOT funding

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, June 17, 2014

On Monday, MDOT funds allocated to Pearl River County to help build a service road connecting Anchor Lake and West Union roads went unacknowledged.

What does this mean for the county? It means the county misses out on funds that could have been used to improve access to the Interstate for many Carriere residents.

The proposed project has been discussed for years, but continually met with opposition from residents living along Reese Road, which is currently a dead end street. Their contention was that the project would bring unwanted traffic through their area.

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The project would have built a connector road from Anchor Lake Road to Reese Road, ultimately tying Anchor Lake and West Union together and providing easy access to the Interstate for many.

While Lumpkin Road already provides this access, county officials state the road’s narrow path is not suited for the traffic.

It is understandable that residents living along a dead end road would not want the extra traffic that connecting Anchor Lake Road would bring. However, the county needs to find a solution to the problem residents living on Anchor Lake Road face. The best solution would be to build on and off ramps at the I-59 overpass on Anchor Lake Road.

However, several issues prevent that from happening, one of which is cost.

So the county is left to find alternate ways to fix the problem. Right now it looks like this option is hitting a brick wall, and should the county fail to take action these funds will be diverted to another county by the Mississippi Department of Transportation. Additionally, MDOT will take note that our county officials declined assistance to help fix a problem it faces.

Should the county decide to apply for funding for another project, it is a sure bet that declining these funds will be taken into consideration.