LITTLE ROCK (7-2)

     The contractor repairing flood damage on Highway 71, just north of Mountainburg, will re-open the highway to traffic by 5 p.m. on July 2, according to Arkansas St ate Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) officials. Traffic will use an unpaved area of the roadway with northbound and southbound traffic alternately sharing one lane.

      The contractor will continue work to restore the highway including completion of the rock fill and re-paving of the roadway over the next several weeks.

      On June 23, the roadway was closed when crews making repairs to the section of the highway impacted by a landslide discovered additional instability. Traffic had utilized one lane with northbound and southbound traffic alternating prior to the road closure.

      The affected area is located just south of the entrance to Lake Fort Smith St ate Pa rk on Highway 71.  “The closure had impacted access to the State Park as well as travel by residents of the area and emergency services” stated Joe Shipman, AHTD District Four Engineer. “Initial projections were for a closure of up to two weeks. The vigo rous effort by the contractor has resulted in the roadway being re-opened sooner than projected.”

      Motorists should exercise caution when approaching and traveling through all highway work zones.     



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