GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Finally, there are some real signs that the Courthouse Road improvement project is getting close to an end. The final paving on the south side from U.S. 90 to the railroad tracks is about finished.
Asphalt isn’t the most pleasant of aromas, but it can smell sweet if you’ve been waiting a long time for it.
“Very excited,” said CeCe McKenzie with Total Woman Hair Salon. “We’re all ecstatic in here because this has been a long-time coming.”
McKenzie has been at this location on Courthouse Road south of the tracks for seven years, and the construction has taken a toll.
“I personally have had two flat tires. I just got a new one so hopefully... I’m thankful they are working on it now, so hopefully no more flat tires," she said.
This is the final stage of the paving process and indicates that the project is in the final stretch.
Pre-paving work continues north of the tracks, and that is almost finished.
Even when the paving is finished, there will be more work left to do on sidewalks and crosswalks.
“I think it’s going to be beautiful,” said Kendra Simpson. “It’s going to be great for Courthouse Road and the businesses on Courthouse Road. We’re excited to see the paving today. It’s better on our tires, and I know everybody that travels Courthouse Road thinks the same right now.”
Simpson works on Courthouse Road and travels the road daily.
“It’s been an issue just getting back and forth,” she said. “You’re never sure when there’s going to be trucks or how the road conditions are, but in the end, it’s going to be worth it. It’s going to be beautiful; it’s going to be good for Gulfport.”
Depending on weather, the entire stretch of Courthouse Road from Pass Road to Highway 90 will be paved in a couple of weeks.
Jay Bearden Construction, Inc., the company contracted with with project, has been fined $130,000 as of Wednesday due to the delay in completion.