Martin Bluff Road Widening Project still a go - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Martin Bluff Road Widening Project still a go

City leaders agree it's been a long process, but they want to reassure everyone relief is on the way. (Photo source: WLOX) City leaders agree it's been a long process, but they want to reassure everyone relief is on the way. (Photo source: WLOX)
GAUTIER, MS (WLOX) -

It's no secret Martin Bluff Road in Gautier needs a little extra room.

"It's high volume traffic, a lot of speeders are here," said resident Dennis Willis.

A sign that sits at the western entrance reads, "Widening project - completion mid-2016." But as of October 2017, the thoroughfare is still a narrow two-lane road.

"I don't know what they're waiting on," said resident Robert Royal, who has driven the road for years. "I've owned a house over here since '87. The roads are all messed up here, the traffic is crazy here. They should [have] had it widened a while back."

City leaders agree it's been a long process, but they want to reassure everyone relief is on the way.

"We're in the final acquisition phases. We are trying to relocate our last tenant and then after that, we'll be looking to demo all the properties we've acquired," said Gautier Grants and Projects Director April Havens. "It's hard when you're waiting on all the paperwork ends, and all of the pre-work to begin because you can't see anything happening. But it is happening; a lot of stuff is happening behind the scene."

Despite a few roadblocks, crews are almost ready to start construction.

"Coming next year you'll actually see the work happening. You'll see the houses coming down," Havens added. 

And from there, construction time is estimated at 18 months. Still, some residents say they aren't happy about the time it's taking for the widening to happen.

"They shouldn't [have] said this stuff until they made sure," Royal said.

Others say, they'll continue to patiently await some relief.

"I'm confident in the city that they're doing the best that they can," Willis said.

City leaders hope to begin construction in the first or second quarter of 2018.

Copyright 2017 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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