The Harrison County road and bridge department recently kicked off its summer road construction plan, completing its role in one of the special projects, so far, on the agenda, County Engineer John Paul Jones reported.

“Construction started on Monday, June 3,” Jones said, updating the Harrison County Commissioners Court Wednesday.

“We have completed our portion of the work on the Young Road interlocal project with the city of Hallsville in Precinct 3,” he said. “The engineer representing Hallsville, Stan Hayes, will be inspecting the road base and giving the authorization for (paving contractor) Reynolds and Kay to proceed with the overlay portion of the work sometime this week.”

Jones noted that a preconstruction meeting was held on June 4. Contractor Reynolds and Kay is now waiting for the green light from road and bridge to schedule the work. He said the project will be completed no later than Aug. 15, per court-approved bid specifications.

“Reynolds and Kay indicated it would be a short lead time once they received the authorization to begin,” said Jones.

He noted the other special project, which is for Cave Springs Road, also in Precinct 3, is expected to wrap up within the next week, ahead of its June 30 deadline.

“The road and bridge department held a preconstruction meeting with (contractor) H.V. Caver on June 5,” he said regarding that project.

The court approved the 2019 summer road construction plan in April, calling for the repair of 19.327 miles of road.

Of the 19.327 miles planned for repair this year, 17.827 of them will be reconstructed; 1.5 miles will be special projects on Young and Cave Springs Roads in Hallsville.

According to the proposed plan, the 7.528 miles of road to be repaired in Precinct 1 are: Munden Dance Hall Road, beginning 0.7 miles from Gainsville Road; Washington Road; Judge Furrh Road; Old Town Road (South of Farm-to-Market Road 451); Old Port Caddo Road, starting at State Highway 43; West Road, from the end of 2012 construction to the county line; and Buck Sherrod Road South, from FM 2199 to the Interstate 20 frontage road.

In Precinct 2, the 1.059 miles of roads slated to be reconstructed are: Jay Street; Jay Street Cut-off; Byrd Circle; and Old Port Caddo Road, starting at State Highway 43.

The 4.171 miles of road in Precinct 3 set to be renewed are: Willow Road, beginning at Country Club Road West; Peter Bonner Road, beginning at Stan Summers Road, heading west; Community Boulevard; Waldrons Ferry Road North; and Cain Cemetery Road.

In Precinct 4, the 5.069 miles of roads to be repaired are: Margaret Drive; Ora Asa Johnson Road; Edmondson Road, beginning at Blackburn heading west; Davidson Road, beginning two miles west of Highway 450; and all of Roosevelt Taylor Road.

“Currently we’re mobilizing to Old Port Caddo on the east side in Precinct 1 and 2 and Cain Cemetery on the west side. That’s precinct 3,” said Jones.

He said those repairs are funded by road damage money.

“We’re trying to use as much road damage money as possible,” said Jones.

In other business, Jones reported that road and bridge crews continue to work to repair of damages from the inclement spring storms.

“The road and bridge department has incurred nearly $170,000 in expenses related to this weather event with the figure still increasing,” the county engineer said.

County Judge Chad Sims thanked the road and bridge department, fire marshal’s office, sheriff’s office and Pct. 1 County Commissioner William Hatfield for their role in the cleanup efforts at Caddo Lake in the wake of the floods.

“Y’all were all just really involved in that and made it go as smoothly as possible, serving our folks down there that were impacted by the floods,” said Sims. Thank you for that.”

He explained because of the expenses he’s concerned about the status of the department’s road oil and paving materials budget.