Arkansas Transportation

State highway officials will begin holding public meetings on how to improve Interstate 30 in central Arkansas.

Plans to connect highway traffic around Bella Vista have been indefinitely postponed after Missouri voters rejected an amendment to fund their state's portion of the project.

The measure was voted down on a statewide ballot Tuesday. The Interstate 49 bypass was defeated as part of a larger amendment to provide $540 million per year for Missouri highway and road construction through a statewide sales tax.

A Missouri engineer says the project was estimated to cost Arkansas taxpayers $150 million and Missouri taxpayers $50 million.

Fuel efficiency, cost effectiveness, cleaner air are all benefits a handful of local officials are praising with the dawning of the Central Arkansas Transit Authority's new, soon to be introduced natural gas fleet.

CATA is being recognized for its efforts to convert its fleet of buses to use Compressed Natural Gas, or CNG, as a fuel. The conversion comes as city leaders increasingly talk up the benefits of bolstering public transportation in the area. The authority will be receiving 15 new CNG buses, starting next summer, says executive president Jarrod Varner.

I-30 interstate bridge arkansas river
KARK-TV 4

A $450 million bridge building project in Little Rock has been halted by the Federal Highway Administration.

The agency wants engineers to explore other ways to ease congestion on the Interstate 30 corridor near the Arkansas River. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports it may take six to nine months for officials to decide whether to replace or rehabilitate and modify the existing bridge.

Initial planning has begun to consider providing express bus service between Conway, Little Rock and North Little Rock.

The urban planning organization Metroplan recently conducted a study to determine the feasibility of providing the public transit service.

Study Director Casey Covington says community feedback shows there would be support for the idea, but there are initial, monetary challenges.

Arkansas Highway & Transportation Dept.
Arkansas Highway & Transportation Dept.

Road crews building traffic islands and hanging signs will close lanes at Little Rock's Big Rock interchange next week.

The state Highway and Transportation Department said Friday that the eastbound lane of Financial Center Parkway from Hermitage Road to Interstate 630 will be closed so crews can build traffic islands amid a construction project.

Work will take place next Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Next Tuesday night, a westbound lane of Interstate 630 will be closed near its intersection with Interstate 430 so crews can hang overhead signs.

Attorney General Dustin McDaniel's office is providing residents more information about vehicle recalls.

To determine whether a vehicle's been recalled, McDaniel says motorists can visit the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration website, www.safercar.gov . There, consumers can search NHTSA's database by year, make and model for information about recalls, investigations and complaints.

The database also includes information about recalls of child restraints, tires and other equipment.

Officials say Conway's new airport is set to open later this summer.

Airport manager Josh Zylks says Aug. 14 is the targeted opening date, though that may be pushed back because of recent rains. The new airport will be known as Cantrell Field and will be located in the Lollie Bottoms area of Conway.

City leaders had long talked about the need for a new airport, but the project was given more priority after a pilot crashed his plane into a home near Conway's current airport in 2007. The pilot was killed in the crash, along with a woman in the house.

Parts of a northeast Arkansas highway will be closed through at least Friday as crews make repairs following last week's train derailment.

The Arkansas State Highway Commission has approved several bids for road improvements in the Jacksonville area.

The largest of the bids announced Tuesday is a nearly $42 million project to reconstruct and widen 1.3 miles of U.S. 67 in Jacksonville.

The project includes replacing the bridges over Redmond Road and Main Street, and resurfacing interchange ramps. Work on that project is set to begin within the next month and should be complete in early 2016.

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