Work on O'Neal and John Clark Roads nearing completion

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Frustrations many drivers feel on O'Neal Road in Gulfport will slowly begin disappearing. Pesky pot holes that littered the street are getting the attention they need on the eve of Harrison County School District's first day back.

Wednesday is day four for road crews, who were out on O'Neal Road fixing what project officials call asphalt failures. On Thursday, work happens at John Clark Road.

"O'Neal was even worse than John Clark and it's longer construction and it's just pot hole after pot hole," said J.P. Sherman.

An account that once described O'Neal Road no longer applies. These workers completed the first phase of work on O'Neal Road by fixing pot holes and other bad spots. According to officials with Garner Russell and Associates Engineering, the firm overseeing the project, on Thursday similar work will be completed on John Clark Road, which is another problem street that's also caused frustration for drivers.

"It has been extremely difficult. I travel up and down that road everyday several times a day. I have many children and we go back and forth on that road. It bounces the car around so severely that it makes my youngest one cry," said Ashley Chichkanov.

"I had to detour because of so many cutouts in the permanent position of the road. It has changed and every time I go through there, it doesn't look like there is any headway being made or any production being shown to this community," said Donnell Robinson.

Sherman says the bumpy ride on John Clark Road doesn't only impact his alignment; it's caused him to detail his vehicle more regularly. He says he drives miles out of the way to avoid messy and sometimes dangerous conditions.

"It's just a mess. We can't keep our cars clean. The dust is everywhere and it's just a mess. I hope to see them repave it and restrip it," said Sherman.

His hopes will come true. There is a second phase to both road projects scheduled for next week. Officials say that's when an inch and a half of asphalt will be poured over the existing pavement after that stripping will be all that's left for crews to do.

Work began on O'Neal back in May and on John Clark Road work began in June. Weather permitting, both repaving projects are expected to be completed by the end of August. These projects are both part of Gulfport's city wide paving project that began back in 2012.

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