West Rankin Parkway still has no definite completion date

Published: Mar. 22, 2023 at 7:37 PM CDT
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FLOWOOD, Miss. (WLBT) - You may have driven by and wondered when the West Rankin Parkway will open. It’s been 9 years since that project officially started, and the road is still not finished.

In Flowood, the parkway starts at the corner of Treetops Boulevard. It then extends all the way through Pearl to Pearson Road.

The West Rankin Parkway project was launched in 2014, but the concept has been bounced around far longer…

“Our involvement started I think is around 1995-96,” Gary Rhoads, the mayor of Flowood said.

This road is a 3.5 mile stretch that would connect Pearl to Flowood, cutting down commute time for drivers.

For years, different obstacles have gotten in the way of the project being completed.

Brad White, Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Transportation, Pearl Mayor Jake Windham, and Flowood Mayor Gary Rhoads all say the latest hold up is unstable soil found throughout the project.

Pearl’s mayor sent us a statement that reads, “We are working closely with Mississippi Department of Transportation Executive Director Brad White, Flowood Mayor Gary Rhoads, our Rankin County Legislative delegation and the Rankin Board of Supervisors to move this project along. The delay involves a geotechnical issue with dissipating soil. We all are working closely with MDOT to move the project forward and make sure the road is built properly. The great thing is the Rankin Board of Supervisors, MDOT, Mayor Rhoads and our state delegation are all committed to getting the project done.”

The project must now go back to square one and start back at the bidding process.

“We’ll be terminating the current contract on it, and relating another contract that will go back and we’ll make the repairs or replace the bad dirt and get moving again and moving toward the final stages of paving it and being able to open highway,” says MDOT Executive Director, Brad White.

And so, when will that happen? No one really knows at this point when you’ll be able to drive on this road named Highway 477 by state lawmakers.

“you know, oh, well, so say in Rome wasn’t built overnight,” Rhoads said.

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