Local man put in charge of state bridges

New management has been put in charge of the 4,227 Mississippi bridges.

Local resident Justin Walker was recently named the new director of structures and state bridge engineer by The Mississippi Department of Transportation.

He will help ensure state structures are well designed and maintained, with a focus on providing safe solutions for the traveling public. Walker will be coordinating with MDOT and the Federal Highway Administration.

“We look forward to Mr. Walker’s innovative approach to tackling the state’s high number of bridge deficiencies through technology and resources,” said MDOT Executive Director Melinda McGrath. “With funding challenges, his leadership will be crucial in stretching taxpayer dollars while providing safe bridges for the traveling public.”

Walker

Walker

The MDOT Mississippi Bridge Design Division looks for safe and cost effective ways to design and maintain highways, interstate bridges and other structures. According to the 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers infrastructure report card, even though there are several issues with Mississippi roads and bridges, the state ranks 16th for the positive strides and improvements made by the MDOT.

Walker joined MDOT in 1997 as a bridge design engineer. He has served as design team leader, design section engineer over MDOT District One, Five and Seven and as deputy director of structures – assistant state bridge engineer.

Walker is a member of the Mississippi Engineering Society, the Structural Engineering Association of Mississippi and the T17 Welding American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials subcommittee on bridges and structures.

Walker is from Lincoln County and attended Loyd Star High School. He received a degree in civil engineering from Mississippi State University. Walker currently lives in Brookhaven with his wife, Virginia, and children, Lesley and Payne. He is also a deacon at Friendship Baptist Church.