Millions in funding proposed for highway widening projects in South Mississippi

MDOT plans to widen Highway 90 from Highway 609 to Dolphin Drive. In Harrison County, the plan is to go from four to six lanes from O’Neal Road to School Road.
Published: Feb. 16, 2023 at 6:24 PM CST
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OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (WLOX) - Thursday, Gov. Tate Reeves made his recommendation that $1.3 billion go to roadway projects in Mississippi, with $103 million of those funds dedicated to widening and improving Highway 49 in Harrison County and Highway 90 in Jackson County.

“It’s definitely needed,” said Ocean Springs store owner Natalie Goff. Her CBD shop is located along Highway 90.

“It absolutely gets congested. With more and more businesses that have come, it’s brought even more traffic and it becomes a problem,” she said.

MDOT plans to widen the roadway from Highway 609 in Ocean Springs to Dolphin Drive in Gautier. The project will cost $60 million. Ocean Springs Mayor Kenny Holloway tells WLOX News, for drivers, it will be money well spent.

“[Traffic] is bumper to bumper. It’s gridlocked. The road needs to be widened. It’s been needing to be widened,” Holloway said.

This is a project city leaders have pushed for years now. Design work for the six lanes is complete. The governor’s proposal would finally fund the construction.

“A year ago, I was in Jackson with MDOT and we discussed a three-year plan. It sounds like this will expedite that plan,” Holloway said. “The design allows traffic to flow a lot quicker than it does now. It’s just one more step in progress for Ocean Springs.”

In Harrison County, $43 million will go to Highway 49. The plan is to go from four to six lanes from O’Neal Road to School Road. MDOT has already moved utilities to get ready for the widening. A new intersection will also be built at Highway 49 and Highway 53 to handle growth in that area.

Reeves also proposed an additional $24 million go toward widening I-10 from Diamondhead to Wolf River. That’s on top of the $ 60 million federal grant already in place for that work.

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