BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - If the weather cooperates, a new layer of asphalt should cover Irish Hill Drive in Biloxi by the early part of next week.
When that resurfacing work is done, road crews will move to Popp's Ferry Road, and then Pass Road. City leaders said Biloxi waited until Highway 90 construction was finished before it started tearing up the city's other major traffic arteries.
A variety of machines churned up quite a mess on Irish Hill Drive. Milling equipment and sweepers chewed through the two lane road. A water truck followed closely behind. It hosed down the dust before a cloud of old asphalt particles floated over Lucile Jiminez's home.
"I hope it will be all right this afternoon, because I've gotta go to the beauty shop," she laughed.
Jiminez has watched the Irish Hill makeover from her yard.
"You can't go that way," she said, pointing to the east and to the west. "You've gotta turn and go the other way. But, it's been all right."
Throughout the week, signs have warned Irish Hill drivers to expect delays, and flagmen urged them to slow down. With the old roadbed just about gone, paving crews prepped this three mile stretch of Biloxi for its new asphalt top.
The $2.5 million project is being paid for by the feds. When it's done, drivers will have a smoother ride to Biloxi Junior High School, Keesler Air Force Base, and the police station.
"Looks to me like they've got it all milled, and getting ready to pour asphalt," Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway said. "So they should be out of there within another three or four days."
When Irish Hill is done, the milling equipment moves to the south end of Popp's Ferry Road. After that, Warren Paving tears up the Biloxi side of Pass Road. Both of those repaving projects will be done at night, so fewer drivers are inconvenienced by the city's road improvements.
"We need to move that traffic. And we need those road built," the mayor said.
A Biloxi news release says all three traffic arteries should be resurfaced by the end of April.