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Reconstruction of 2.7-mile stretch of State Line Avenue could begin in 2023

Reconstruction of 2.7-mile stretch of State Line Avenue could begin in 2023

June 12th, 2019 by Karl Richter in Texarkana News

Mike Malone listens to Steve Frisbee, district engineer from Arkansas Department of Highways, explain the process of how to repair State Line Avenue at the Joint Texarkana Community Committee meeting Tuesday in Texarkana, Texas.

Photo by Hunt Mercier /Texarkana Gazette.

Replacing the concrete pavement of a segment of North State Line Avenue could begin in 2023, state and local transportation officials said Tuesday.

Coordinating planning between Arkansas and Texas is the most difficult part about advancing the $20 million project, a committee comprising Texarkana, Ark., and Texarkana, Texas, elected officials heard.

The comments came during a quarterly meeting of the Joint Texarkana Community Committee, a bi-city panel formed by the Texarkana USA Chamber of Commerce to share information about matters of common interest.

Arkansas Department of Transportation has a $9.9 million expenditure planned for the project, District Engineer Steve Frisbee said. The remainder of the funding will come from a combination of Texas Department of Transportation and Texarkana Metropolitan Planning Organization spending.

TxDOT is seeking $7 million from the Texas Transportation Commission for the project, in which case MPO would provide another $3 million, TxDOT District Engineer Michael Anderson and MPO Director Rea Donna Jones said.

If the Commission decides against funding the project, TxDOT's Atlanta District will provide $5 million from its rehabilitation budget and MPO will provide the remaining $5 million.

"We're just waiting to see what pot of money it's coming out of," Anderson said.

The start date of 2023 is a "place mark," and preliminary steps such as engineering studies and environmental reviews, as well as the complexity of coordinating two states' efforts, could push back the project's beginning. Once started, the work would take about two years.

A 2.7-mile segment of the avenue south of Interstate 30 will be completely demolished and rebuilt, the only way to rehab an all-concrete roadway.

The result will be "not necessarily fun" for local drivers, as entering and leaving the avenue will be at times restricted, Anderson said. An average of 20,000 vehicles a day travels on State Line, Frisbee said.

A federal BUILD Grant could pay for complementary improvements such as lighting, sidewalks, crosswalks and bike trails, Jones said.

The meeting took place at the Ark-Tex Council of Governments on the Texas side. The JTCC's next meeting is scheduled for September.

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