Starting Point: At MS 15 near Union, Newton County
Ending Point: At MS 19 northwest of Meridian, Lauderdale County
Official Distance (MDOT): 23.454 miles
Counties: Newton, Lauderdale
Cities/towns over 5,000 pop served: None
Freeway Segments: None
Other Multilane Segments: None
Average Daily Traffic (1998): Ranges from 1,500 in eastern Newton County to 3,100 near MS 19.
Notes: None at present.
What I'd Do: My proposed extension would make it into a halfways-decent 3dms. From near the hamlet of Schamberville, I would reroute it onto existing country roads and/or some new construction or road realignment. It would intersect MS 19 in Collinsville, then continue east across the Lake Okitibbee causeway, then continue east to the MS 39/Stennis Drive intersection. From there, it would follow Stennis Drive for a couple miles east (not quite to NAS Meridian), then continue along the planned Stennis Drive/US 45 connector. East of US 45, it would effectively become a new highway (including about 1 mile in Alabama), to connect to I-20/59/US 80 EAST at the Cuba exit, and could go one of two ways. One would follow Minnow Bucket Road, bypass Dalewood Lake to the south, then continue on new highway. The other would duplex with US 45 up to Lauderdale, then continue southeast on new construction roughly parallel to Kewanee Rd and Cuba Rd.
The main reasoning behind my proposal is to improve access to/from NAS Meridian, as well as improve overall access in the northern part of Lauderdale County. The current routing between Collinsville and Lauderdale has many twists and turns and requires 13 turns. Also, there is currently no direct access from NAS Meridian to either MS 19 or US 45.
Another reasoning would be to improve access from US 80 EAST and I-20/59 in Alabama to the base and US 45 NORTH.
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