• Safety improvements continue at Goodman Road in DeSoto County

    The Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) continues to work on safety improvements at the Interstate 55 intersection with Goodman Road in DeSoto County.

    The intersection averages 41,000 motorists each day.

    When the project is completed in late fall, traffic exiting I-55 will be reconfigured to help alleviate congestion and increase safety.

    “The improvements will improve traffic flow at this high-use intersection,” said Commissioner Mike Tagert, Northern Transportation District. “Crews have nearly completed the first phase which included substantial drainage work at the interchange.”

    The Goodman Road intersection is being constructed in multiple phases that require the completion of one phase before moving on to the next. Workers are active in different areas of the project site to complete specific steps and minimize the impact to traffic flow.

    Currently, motorists exiting I-55 northbound have two options: turn left at the traffic light or merge right. Some right-turning vehicles must cross three lanes of traffic to access the turn lane for Southcrest Parkway and the hospital.

    When the new configuration is completed, motorists will have three options: turn left at the traffic light, merge right or turn right at a new lane controlled by a traffic light. The new lane will access two dedicated turn lanes to Southcrest Parkway separated by slotted curbs.

    “The new configuration will prevent traffic that is merging right from crossing over to the dedicated turn lanes,” Tagert said.

    A similar configuration will be installed for I-55 southbound traffic accessing Interstate Boulevard where there will be one dedicated turn lane separated by slotted curbs.

    For traffic on Goodman Road, currently motorists heading east have three through lanes and two options to access I-55.

    When the project is completed, motorists will no longer be able to turn left across traffic to access I-55. Instead motorists will have to use the existing right lane entrance to the on-ramp loop. The three through lanes will remain. A similar configuration will be installed for westbound traffic on Goodman Road.

    “By eliminating the option to merge over multiple lanes of traffic and the option to turn left across traffic, the new configuration will decrease conflict points and encourage traffic flow,” Tagert said.

    Crews are preparing to pave several sections of the project before moving on the second phase of the project, which will eliminate the left turns on to I-55.

    Phase 3 will remove existing medians and add slotted curbs. Phase 4 will complete the new right turn bays at both exit ramps.

    The $5.3 million project was awarded to Ferrell Paving, Inc., of Memphis, Tenn., in November 2017.

    Work zones can present unfamiliar traffic patterns for motorists. For information on how to navigate a highway work zone safely, visit GoMDOT.com/drivesmartms.

    For more information about MDOT maintenance and safety projects, visit MDOTtraffic.com, download the free MDOT Traffic mobile app or like and follow @MississippiDOT on Facebook and Twitter.

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