Highway 62-412 resurfacing underway in Fulton County
Motorists driving on Highway 62-412 in western Fulton County are experiencing some traffic delays since a major resurfacing project began the week of June 10.
In April, the Arkansas State Highway Commission awarded a contract for the resurfacing of 8.6 miles of Highway 62-412 from Viola to the Baxter County line. Atlas Asphalt of Batesville won the contract with a bid of $1,616,542.
"The resurfacing will begin at the Baxter County line and continue east for five miles, stopping where passing lanes begin," said Lyndal Waits, District Engineer for the Arkansas Highway and Transportation office in Batesville. "The work will pick up on the east side of the passing lanes and continue to the (Highway) 223 intersection at Viola."
Viola Mayor Jackie Estes said the state had not supplied him with information about the project but he was glad to hear it was in the works. "I've noticed that some of the pavement here in town, especially around the convenience store, is cracking and deteriorating, so the resurfacing is needed," Estes said. While the project deadline is not until fall, the Mayor expected - from past experience - that once the contractor got started, crews would stay on the job and get it done quickly.
On June 10, an Atlas Asphalt machine began chewing up the pavement, and by Thursday, June 13, a two mile stretch of roadway heading west from Viola had been completed. As trucks, asphalt equipment and rolling machines work in one lane, traffic is stopped to allow vehicles in both directions to take turns using the remaining lane, a process that causes some delays for motorists.
In recent years, Highway 62-412 between Salem and Viola has been resurfaced and some passing lanes have been added. When the latest resurfacing project is completed, the highway will have been upgraded from Salem to the Baxter County line.
"Highway 62 is part of the national highway system. It carries a lot of car and truck traffic, and we try to keep it in good shape," Waits said. "When the resurfacing is done, most of the road will be 34-feet in width, so the road will be in good shape.