At a Location Public Hearing in June of this year, the Department presented alternatives for improvements, including widening the existing highway through town and bypass options both north and south of town. Improvements to the existing highway through town are not feasible, mainly because of the number of relocatees, including several historic buildings.
However, the community's local and state elected officials and some business owners have continued to express concern over the possible impact of a bypass on the local economy, which has factored into the decision to defer action on this project.
Engineering and environmental analysis will now focus on other segments of Highway 62 that local officials and the Department's staff have identified as having a high priority.
"Improvements to Highway 62 are needed in numerous locations within this highway corridor," state AHTD Director Scott Bennett. "Therefore, the Department will now redirect its efforts and funding to areas that warrant improvement from a safety and capacity standpoint."
The Department will keep area residents informed of any new Highway 62 improvement projects that will be developed and evaluated to address the identified needs within this corridor.