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City Council hears requests; will wait for final information for next steps

During Tuesday’s meeting of the Picayune City Council, the council received updates about the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) request to use of one of the city’s water towers and a request for improvements at an intersection.

MDOT is looking to keep an eye on traffic at Picayune intersections on the north end of town during Phase 1 of the widening of Highway 11. According to Director of Public Works Eric Morris, traffic cameras will likely go on the traffic signals where Highway 11 North crosses Mississippi Highway 43 North near Claiborne Hill Supermarket. Morris said these cameras will be not installed to catch motorists ,or running the lights, but to allow MDOT to watch traffic flow.

MDOT wants to place radio equipment on top of the water tower located on Stemwood Drive. This equipment communicates with different traffic signals along the corridor allowing them to be timed properly. This radio equipment is what also allows the traffic cams to be a part of a large network of cameras whose video can be accessed by the public on MDOT’s website according to Morris.

The matter had to be tabled by the council due to a final agreement being prepared by MDOT wasn’t prepared in time for this meeting. Morris, made it clear that all of the equipment to be installed by MDOT would be independent of the city’s infrastructure and would not cost the city any money. Phase 2 of this project will come at a later date and the same equipment would be placed on the water tower located near Wal-Mart.

Council members Tammy Valente, Larry Breland, and Janice Miller-Stephens

In other action taken at the meeting, Jonathan Hickman, representing the City Engineer's office, asked the council to approve receiving quotes on improving the intersection of Cooper Road and Country Club Drive. Hickman stated that a low spot in the road is causing some motorists to bottom out in their vehicles when crossing and the area also holds water when it rains due to poor drainage.

Hickman explained to Council that funds for the project were already allocated in the budget and not part of the Citywide Paving Project. Hickman told the council he expects the project to not exceed $50,000. The council approved the motion for soliciting of bids for the project.


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