Rasco Road now runs east and west through Mississippi's third-largest city and Southaven Mayor Darren Musselwhite said the extension of the road paves the way for improved fire and police protection and continued residential development.

Musselwhite and the entire Southaven Board of Aldermen were on hand for the official opening of Rasco Road between Swinnea and Tchulahoma roads.

"The expansion of Rasco Road was talked about for so long," Musselwhite told a sizable crowd gathered at the road's ribbon cutting on Thursday. "It's an east-west corridor that takes traffic congestion off Goodman Road."

Cherry Hill subdivision residents, Southaven Chamber of Commerce officials, construction and banking officials were all part of the crowd that gathered under overcast skies to herald the opening of the road, which has been accessible to "through traffic" for some time.

"This is huge," said Ward 3 Alderman George Payne. "It's a big deal. I remember growing up in Greenbrook when they finally opened up Greenbrook Parkway through to Airways. That was a game changer. This is a game changer. Just having another east-west corridor will take traffic off Goodman and Stateline."

Musselwhite said he anticipates the expansion of Rasco Road to also be a catalyst for future growth.

"It's good to see residential construction thriving again in Southaven," Musselwhite said. "Opening up Rasco will spur most of the growth in this area."

The extension of Rasco Road also provides increased fire and police protection since emergency, fire and police now have smooth, quick access to residents and commercial businesses along Rasco Road.

The opening of Rasco Road coincides with the opening to traffic of newly-expanded Getwell Road, which was recently expanded to five lanes.

Work along Getwell Road was delayed when improvements had to made to the older section of the roadbed.

Robert Lee Long is Community Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune. He may be contacted at rlong@desototimestribune.com or at 662-429-6397, Ext. 252.

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