Paragould Race Track Development Faces Opposition

November 16, 2004 -- Posted at 6:30 p.m. CST

PARAGOULD -- Paragould residents gathered in quorum court to express concerns about the development of a race track along U.S. 412 West.

Resident Joe Faukner, the creator of a petition to stop the development, says, "We started a petition on the count of the noise, pollution, the dust, traffic and value of our property."

Although residents have doubts about the project, the County's hands are tied.

Jerry Cunningham, Quorum Quort Chairman of Public Affairs, says, "The quorum qourt doesn't have the ability to stop it at all. They might be able to get legal advice and go before a judge, but we don't have any ordinances at all for that property."

Landowner Keith Bayird continues to be optimistic about the project.

"When we have the big races, it will like six a year, people will come from all over the country," Bayird says.

Bayird expects the that the expansion of Highway 412 to four lanes should rid residents of traffic concerns.

As for other concerns, he is willing to compromise.

"I hate that people are upset about the situation, but I'll do anything I can to make people happy in the area," Bayird says.

Until then, the project is full speed ahead.