PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - One of the 3 options for the Highway 412 Bypass Interchange at Arkansas Highway 358 has been selected by the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department.
Also known as the Paragould Bypass, the AHTD chose the Single-Point Urban Interchange as the eastern alternative to make the connection at Arkansas Highway 358. The AHTD released a map indicating the path of the bypass.
The decision followed public meetings in Feb. 2014 and Oct. 2014.
In the statement released Thursday AHTD Director Scott Bennett said, "After considering the social, economic, environmental, and cost impacts, we believe this is the best overall plan for this important project in northeast Arkansas."
Right of way acquisition for the bypass is expected to begin in the summer according to AHTD. Construction on the interchange is scheduled for 2016.
Two of the ultimately 4 lanes of the bypass are being constructed now.
AHTD stated planning for the Paragould Bypass has been in the works since 1992.
They also stated, "The project is designed to enhance safety and improve traffic operations in the vicinity of Paragould and is part of an overall effort to upgrade U.S. Highway 412 as a major east-west corridor in Arkansas."