New leg of I-69 in Mississippi to open in October

TUNICA, Miss. (AP) - Transportation officials have tentatively scheduled the ribbon-cutting for the Tunica-to-Hernando leg of Interstate 69. The 20-mile section will link from U-S Highway 61 to Interstate 55.

The October 3rd ceremony is part of activities related to the Mississippi Transportation Institute Conference at the Grand Casino Convention Center in Tunica County.

Mississippi Department of Transportation engineer Jimmy Dickerson says the concrete surface was finished on most of the route, and the contractor was working on entrances and exits.

APAC Tennessee began construction in April 2005 on a $53.8 million contract for I-69 from Robinsonville to north of Hernando.

Tunica County put up bond money to finance the project, which will be reimbursed from future federal transportation dollars coming to Mississippi.

Tunica County officials supported the project because the road will improve highway access for their gambling and tourism industries.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)