ARDOT holding virtual hearing on future I-57 project

ARDOT seeks public comment on I-57

LAWRENCE/RANDOLPH COUNTY, Ark. (KAIT) - ARDOT has launched a virtual public meeting for the future I-57 project, showing the most current possible project plans to the public for the first time.

The future I-57 project has been in discussion for several years. The virtual meeting began Thursday.

The project would work to connect Highway 67 from Walnut Ridge to the Missouri state line through the interstate system.

Typically, ARDOT would hold a public meeting in the areas most impacted by the future plans.

District 10 Engineer for ARDOT Brad Smithee said with COVID-19, they had to find a new way to present the latest information.

“In lieu of being able to present it on tables and in a public format locally, it’s a way that we’re trying to do this and keep people safe, keep our social distancing and still offer good information, opportunity for comment, opportunity for questions and answers.”

The virtual public hearing can be found on ARDOT’s website here.

Smithee said the virtual hearing is interactive, allowing the public to make comments on specific areas through the interactive map.

Smithee said for those who are not comfortable with using the virtual hearing or those with limited internet access, ARDOT is always taking calls for comments or questions at (501) 823-0730.

While presenting the latest project plans and environmental study is an important step in the future I-57 project, it will still be several years before any work is actually started.

The virtual public meeting will be available for question and comment on ARDOT’s website from now until Sept. 2.

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