It has been over five years since the City of Jackson invited the neighborhood to the Eudora Welty Library to discuss design options for Riverside Drive now the project is finally moving forward. According to City Engineer, Robert Lee the project goes out for bid on August 31st. A start date for the project has not yet been set.
The design that is being bid out includes Riverside being reduced to two traffic lanes, adding a multi-purpose trail, and retains the median with the oak trees. A cross section of the design can be viewed above. According to the City Engineer, Robert Lee an arborist has looked at the trees and has determined that they can remain. There are up to six trees that may require removal once the project begins, but those are the only trees that would be removed.
Pete Perry with the One-Cent Tax Commission said, “The work will be between the I55 bridge and Peachtree, with the exception that there will be some waterline replacement between Peachtree and the water tower at N State, along with necessary road repairs in that section.” Perry has provided this detailed list of what the project will consist of:
- Remove the current road; excavate some six feet and replace with quality fill, including a barrier designed to mitigate the Yazoo clay impact; New pavement for a two-lane road – one lane north of the median and one lane south. The median is to remain as it is currently, but with new curb and gutters.
- Replace the 18″ waterline that basically feeds Belhaven and the water tower at N State. The 18″ waterline is supposedly 100+ years old.
- Replace the 36″ waterline that runs under Riverside to Peachtree (at that point it turns and goes to Woodrow Wilson and serves west Jackson.) The 36″ waterline is approximately 50 years old.
- Repair as needed the sanitary sewer line that runs under the current roadbed.
- Replace/Repair the storm sewer lines
- Construct a sidewalk along the south side of the new roadbed
- Construct a walking trail along the north side of the new roadbed
- Create a connecting walk from Myrtle to the bridge (created by the walking trail along the railroad bed project)
This project is being funded by the One-Percent Tax Commission. The commission oversees the city’s one-percent infrastructure sales tax. Perry says the current estimate for the project is somewhere around $11 million – of which some $4 million is for water/sewer repair and replacement.