OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - In Ocean Springs, people are speaking up about potential upgrades to a well-traveled road.
Many attending a public meeting about changes on Ocean Springs Rd. between Hwy. 57 and Hwy. 90 say they're looking forward to the changes.
Jackson County resident KC Arnold reviews interactive maps, eagerly giving her input about areas needing improvement on Ocean Springs Rd.
"I put green and red dots all over it. It's a road I travel frequently every day. I want to give suggestions to help make it a better place to be on and not have as many accidents," said Arnold.
Safety on this road is an area of concern for Jackson County Administrator Brian Fulton.
"We've done speed studies. They show high speeds in certain areas out there. Also, some accident data shows that people trying to make a left turn into neighborhoods get into rear-end accidents along the corridor," Fulton said.
He says some of the potential improvements he heard from residents included adding turn lanes and pathways for biking and walking.
"There's been a lot of talk about making improvements to this road for a long time. We got to a position where we're able to take advantage of federal funds out there do this study and see what to do to make improvements. It's all for the welfare of the county and people that use that roadway," said Fulton.
"It's a terrific idea. It needs to be done. The number one problem is safety; walking, running, riding bikes. The number one issue is along those lines. We need wider shoulders and to eliminate ditches. Sidewalks or a multi-use pathway would be absolutely wonderful," Ocean Springs resident Rick Canaan said.
"I'm thrilled. That's why I came tonight. I wanted to see the planning stages. When I ride my bike, it's dangerous. Multiple times I was nearly rear-ended. My son has had an accident on that road. I want to see changes," Arnold said.
Now, project planners will review what residents have shown them as the study advances into January of next year.
Planners and engineers will hold another public meeting after advancing the plan along. The study will wrap up early next year before the project moves into the construction phase.