New Interstate 10 Lane Opens - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

10/31/03

New Interstate 10 Lane Opens

Orange and white barrels that once blocked the extra lane on eastbound I-10, now sit on the side of the interstate. The new lane is open to traffic, but there are signs the work isn't completely finished.

Russell Anderson is the project contractor. He said "Right now, we're grinding a rumble strip into the edge of the roadway to alert traffic if they wander off over the line".

At least the barrels are finally gone, and drivers couldn't be happier. James Steed of Biloxi said "It reduces a lot of traffic, and makes it easy on me. It gets me to school quicker. I can go faster. I don't get as many speeding tickets".

Clifford Mallery of Woolmarket said "Oh it's great, it's great. It gets us up and down the road quicker".

It's a different story on the westbound side of I-10. Crews are still putting the finishing touches on the road side.

Anderson said "We're putting the topsoil down so we need to work behind barrels and hopefully, tomorrow, we'll be able to open those up".

A spokesperson for MDOT says the project actually fell 9 months behind schedule, because engineers had to redesign the Lamey Bridge Road Overpass. That's why those heading up the project and drivers are so eager for the project to come to an end.

Anderson said "It's time to get it over with. You hate to stay on this job this long, but we're still plugging away at it".

Lydia Seymour of Gautier said "I'm ready for it to be over, and I bet it's going to be so much better, when it's all finished. It'll be nice".

The I-10 widening project, from Cowan Lorraine Road to the Jackson County line, costs about $33 million. Crews hope to finish the rumble strips, shoulder work, and permanent striping by Wednesday.

by Trang Pham-Bui

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