Work on exit lighting progressing

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Interstate 55 lighting project is still under way and seemsto be getting closer every day, Mayor Bob Massengill told aldermenduring Tuesday night’s meeting.

Massengill said he had spoken with the Mississippi Department ofTransportation’s district engineer about the lighting planned atExit 40. The project is on that has been long sought by city andcounty, and chamber officials.

“He said they’re still in the design process, but that they’lllet us know when they’re ready to bid out the project,” Massengillsaid.

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In addition, Massengill said he had heard there could possiblybe funding for lights at Exit 42, although there is nothing set instone yet on that.

The mayor said MDOT officials had asked if the city and thecounty could put together the same of agreement they had for theExit 40 lighting. The agreement involves Brookhaven and LincolnCounty agreeing to pay maintenance and electricity for the lights,and MDOT erects them.

The lights are supposed to be the kind that stand on a 60-footpole but can be lowered in order to clean them and change bulbs,Massengill said.

Mike McKenzie, of Williford Gearhart & Knight, also gave theboard an update on several city projects the engineering firm ispursuing. McKenzie said the speculative building is in its finalstages.

“We have a few more things we need to address, but it looks likethat may happen sometime this week,” he said.

In addition, he updated the board on progress on several otherprojects in varying stages of evolution, the largest of which wasthe Hazard Mitigation Grant that will help with sewage onMinnesota, Evelyn, Center and St. George streets.

“We still feel really positive we’ve got a good chance to getfunding and make improvements in that area,” Massengill said.

In addition, the $665,000 already slated to help in riprappingthe Halbert Heights ditch, bolstered by a $100,000 CommunityDevelopment Block Grant, may also see help from a potential grantfrom the National Resource Conservation Service for around $113,000on matching grant.

“If that comes through, I think we’ll be able to go from thebridge down to Brookway Boulevard,” he said.