West Rankin Parkway Project is moving forward, according to MDOT

Published: Aug. 24, 2023 at 10:28 PM CDT
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RANKIN COUNTY, Miss. (WLBT) - Those of you in Rankin County have something to get excited about... as the West Rankin Parkway is moving forward once again.

It’s a project of over 20 years in the making.

“It’s not urban legend. It’s coming to fruition,” Pearl Mayor Jake Windham said.

The Mississippi Department of Transportation says the West Rankin Parkway is finally moving forward after years of roadblocks and detours on the project.

“We had some issues with some of the soil that was brought into and onto this project initially. And when we realized that the soil was going to create a problem. Started removing the soil from that particular section. But then, as we looked at the project closer, we realized that the soil problem extended beyond the area that we were initially looking at,” MDOT Commissioner Willie Simmons explained.

Now, Mayor Windham, Flowood Mayor Gary Rhoads, and Simmons are working together to get plans moving forward.

“We have to be very cognizant of how we build today because what we do today will impact those municipalities 20, 30, 50 years from now,” Simmons said.

Mayor Windham says while traffic flow is the primary reason for the project, it’s not the only thing the area will be used for.

West Rankin Parkway Project is moving forward, according to MDOT
West Rankin Parkway Project is moving forward, according to MDOT(Google Earth || WLBT)

“Mayor Rhodes and I have the same vision, having that as commercial through that area. And it’s going to be I think, the best terms and generational business development that goes in that area. It’s going to have great impact,” Windham explained.

That’s why Simmons says his department is currently working to update construction plans for the parkway - to better assist in the growth of the area.

“You have the federal government, state legislature, the local communities, the Department of Transportation, and the private sector, working in harmony, to make this project work. And we’re looking forward to sometime next summer, perhaps letting in the project and then moving into construction,” Simmons said.

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