Supervisors receive bridge and project funding update during meeting

During Monday’s meeting of the Pearl River County Board of Supervisors, County Engineer Les Dungan gave the board an update on the current state of bridges in Pearl River County.

Dungan said that statewide there are 508 county bridges listed as closed and 1703 posted for low weight throughout the state of Mississippi.

Dungan stated that Pearl River County maintains 144 bridges and 38 of those bridges are supported by significant timber components providing support. Eleven (11) of those 38 bridges have been replaced since 2017 utilizing $3.1 million of state and federal funds.

The eleven include: Spring Hill Road (4 bridges), Otis Jones Road, Harry Sones Road, Progress Road, Silver Run Road, Hickory Grove Road, Rock Ranch Road, and George Ford Road.

Dungan stated that two bridges are currently under construction using Mississippi’s Office of State Aid Road Construction funding of $1.2 million. The two bridges are Sones Chapel Road and Oscar Smith Road. Three other bridges are under construction contract, but still open awaiting start of work and will use $550,000.00 State Funds and $175,000.00 county funds. The three bridges are Nellie Burks Road, Shenandoah Road, and Anchor Lake Road (Mill Creek).

Eight (8) bridges are with funding in place and scheduled for replacement using $4,250,000.00 funds from State Emergency Road and Bridge Repair Funding Project, State Local System Bridge Project, and Mississippi’s Office of State Aid Road Construction.

Thirteen (13) bridges that are in need of repair of replacement as soon as possible. Dungan said the cost for the work for these 13 bridges is approximately $6.5 million and he feels the county should be able to apply for and receive funding. The thirteen include County Farm Road, Boo Road, Edmond Jones Road, South Valley Road, Edmond Mitchell Road, Charlie Daughdrill Road, Ashe Road, Burge and Reyer Road, Harvey Burks Road, and Pine Grove Road. Three of this thirteen are open due to a temporary repair :Olive Church Road, Hickory Grove Road, and Homer Ladner Road.

Dungan said that one bridge in the county has been closed for approximately 20 years, a bridge on Old Hwy 26 west of Poplarville. Dungan said someone put a posted sign on the bridge and he said the county should look at taking it off the inventory.

He also told the board that bids for F.Z. Goss will be opened around the first part of March. Those funds were authorized by the state legislature in the amount of $525,000.00 and will allow for culverts, base work that is needed, and an overlay of asphalt on the road.

Dungan feels optimistic that all county bridges will remain open for the coming year. He said the state supplied inspectors just completed their inspections in January and the county did not receive any critical findings or closures from that inspection. The inspectors are currently doing their load weighting study in the county and it’s possible Pearl River County could get some posting recommendations or closures out of those ratings.

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