The condition of streets in Hernando will be undergoing a needed improvement during the next several weeks as the city moves forward on a number of projects.
One of the city’s major street improvement projects is now underway as resurfacing work is being done on McIngvale Road, said Mayor Tom Ferguson.
“It’s McIngvale between Commerce and Byhalia Road,” Ferguson said Monday morning. “The resurfacing there will probably take three weeks to finish.”
“We’re going to resurface and widen the road,” City Engineer Joe Frank Lauderdale added. “We’ll do widening the road by six feet, and that’ll meet MDOT (Mississippi Department of Transportation) standards. It’s a city project in coordination with MDOT.”
Crews were working on the street Monday morning near the high school and middle school with one lane opened and traffic being waived through around the equipment.
“They’re supposed to get through before school starts,” Lauderdale said.
Another project that is now done involves Byhalia Road and Mt. Pleasant, another project that involved resurfacing and striping of the roadway.
Hernando is undertaking a series of street projects to improve deteriorating roadways.
The list includes: Lambert Drive, East Commerce Street, Heritage Cove, Thousand Oaks Drive, Della Street, Oak Tree Cove, Deer Creek Drive and the north end of Memphis Street.
The list of streets also includes: Gates Cove, Lindsey Cove, Amanda Drive, Clare Cove, Saulsberry Drive, McKinzie Drive, Running Doe Cove and Cobblestone Lane.
All of the above listed streets will undergo resurfacing and/or major repairs. The mayor pointed out that Civil Link is overseeing the McIngvale resurfacing and widening work. Waggoner Engineering will have the crosswalk project and Lauderdale will oversee the other street work being planned.
Another project, realigning another part of McIngvale Road, is being done by Pickering Engineering.
Ferguson said the total cost of the projects is close to $3 million. McIngvale Road itself is about $1 million work of street work.
“Byhalia Road will be another $600,000,” Ferguson pointed out. “Some of it is being funded in various ways. We had in our budget $1.2 million. Byhalia Road is $600,000 in bond money, and we also have $1.2 million in MPO (Memphis Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization) funds.”
Future work will address West Commerce Street and Green T Road with seal coating.
Ferguson said those streets will be seal coated to give the surface a little longer life ahead of needing to be resurfaced.
“Different ideas, different ways of repair and maintenance,” the mayor said. “Sealing is about one-third the cost of an overlay and we’ll get another six-to-eight years out of it by just putting seal coat on before we have to do an overlay.”
Another improvement the city has finished is the repair of a railroad crossing at Robinson Street that was completed last week. Lauderdale said it’s been in bad shape, and with cooperation from the railroad, the crossing has been smoothed over.
“We coordinated with them to be able to work on the right-of-way,” said Lauderdale. “They sent a crew up and removed all the bad cross ties that had failed. The city hired a crew then to come in and put down asphalt for the crossing. It’s a much smoother ride.”
Lauderdale said what would had been a two-day project was done in three days after rain stopped work on the crossing for the day. It was re-opened on Saturday morning, June 29.
Ferguson added crosswalks will be installed in the next three weeks around the courthouse square, a move he said would help improve pedestrian safety around the square.
He said the aggressive efforts will help get Hernando streets closer to the condition they should be in.
“I felt like we were getting behind and the board supported us,” Ferguson said. “We’re doing the best we can to move forward.”
Bob Bakken is Managing Editor of the DeSoto Times-Tribune.