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by Carrie Johnson
Have you noticed the roadwork between Franklin and Glencoe that has been taking place for the past month or so?
Just wait, there’s more.
The Arkansas State Highway Commission has approved a bid for improvements to State Highway 289, from State Highway 56 (Franklin) to US Highway 62 (Glencoe). Atlas Asphalt, Inc of Batesville has been awarded the contract at $1,258,911.35.
Izard and Fulton County Highway Department personnel have been executing all of the prep work for this project, which is what everyone has been seeing around here lately. As most of you may have noticed, there is now a gravel shoulder-like strip on either side of the highway. As a passerby, they look like new shoulders. In fact, the width you see of the road now will be the new width of the blacktop.
The widened road will make traveling much easier for everyone, including tractor-trailers and vehicles pulling trailers. I’m positive that the boaters heading to Horseshoe Bend lakes and golfers heading to the golf courses will be most appreciative. The improvement will ultimately make travel safer for anyone driving the highway.
Instead of applying the usual chip and seal that Highway 289 has seen for years, the State Highway Department will be overlaying the entire section of the highway, starting at Franklin and working toward Glencoe. Super pave asphalt will be used for the project and has a life-expectancy of at least 20 years.
When the overlay is complete, the Izard and Fulton County Highway Departments will finish up by adding shoulders to the road.
Highway 289 will look like US Highway 62 upon completion. What an improvement!
Construction is scheduled to begin in two to four weeks, weather permitting. Finalization is expected in mid-2016.
Use precaution when traveling through road construction to ensure the safety of not only yourself, but the workers. Watch for speed limit changes and sudden stops, and keep an eye out for crew members. Leave early for your destination to allow extra time for travel.

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