AHTD IDENTIFIES PREFERRED ALTERNATIVE FOR HIGHWAY 412 IN SILOAM SPRINGS
LITTLE ROCK (2-2)
The Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) has completed an Environmental Assessment (EA) for Highway 412 improvements in the vicinity of Siloam Springs, Arkansas, and West Siloam Springs, Oklahoma.
After careful consideration of the information contained in the EA and the comments received at the Location Public Hearing held on November 28, 2006, the AHTD, in conjunction with the Oklahoma Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration, has identified improving existing Highway 412 as the Preferred Alternative. Improving existing Highway 412 consists of widening the highway to six travel lanes, installing a median, and curb and gutter design. Left turn lanes will be constructed at intersecting streets.
Improving existing Highway 412 meets the primary purpose and need of the project by adequately carrying the corridor’s projected traffic volumes, thereby satisfying the needs of the community for the next twenty years. The alternative to improve existing Highway 412 had the highest number of supporting comments from the public, would require only minimal amounts of new right of way, should not require the relocation of any businesses or personal properties, had the fewest environmental impacts, and has the lowest cost of any of the alternatives. In addition, the construction of any of the bypass alternatives would not alleviate the need for improvements to existing Highway 412.
The decision was made in consultation with other agencies, including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, and with consideration of public comments collected throughout the environmental review process.
The next step in project development for improving existing Highway 412 in Siloam Springs and West Siloam Springs will be to conduct surveys, archeological work and preliminary design. Once the preliminary design is completed and the right of way limits are established, a Design Public Hearing will be held in the area. After comments from this Design Public Hearing have been addressed, the AHTD will request approval from the Federal Highway Administration in order to proceed with implementation of the proposed improvements as funds become available.