South Central Transportation Advisory Committee Lists Proposed Improvement Projects for Seven County Region, Including Ava and Douglas County

On April 16, the South Central Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC), a 21-person committee made up of three representatives from each of the seven counties in the south central region, met and established a proposed project list for this seven county region.  The region includes the counties of Douglas, Howell, Oregon, Ozark, Shannon, Texas, and Wright

According to the South Central Ozark Council of Governments (SCOCOG), the list is currently intended as a planning tool for MoDOT.  

At present, the proposed projects are not funded; however, MoDOT may choose to include these recommended projects in their annual construction program.  

The proposed lists of projects noted below are tied to additional bonding venues under the existing Amendment Three, which is implemented by an affirmative vote of state legislators to utilize bonding opportunities. 

In Douglas County, three projects were noted on the list: 

• Construct a roundabout at Business Route 5 and North Jefferson Avenue, in Ava, $1,800,000;

•Pave existing four-foot aggregate shoulders along MO 5 from Route A to Gainesville in Douglas and Ozark Counties, $6,500,000;

• Resurface and install safety shoulders and guardrail on MO 14 from Route O to Beaver Creek Bridge in Douglas County, $850,000.

Additional projects on the list were noted as follows: 

Construct safety shoulders and rumble strips on Route and HH from Ellinger Road to the Black Oak Landfill, $1,750,000; 

Expand US 63 to four lanes from Bill Virdon Blvd. in West Plains to Route PP, $8,410,000; 

Intersection improvements (roundabout) to alleviate traffic congestion at Howell Avenue and Business 63 in West Plains, $1,200,000; 

Make improvements to alleviate traffic congestion at US 160 and Route BB in West Plains, $2,300,000; 

Implement flood mitigation measures on MO 142 east of the Eleven Point River bridge in Oregon County, $3,300,000;

Realign MO 95 from the southern city limits through the City of Mountain Grove to Business 60 and construct an overpass at BNSF railway, $4,750,000.  

In addition to the regional recommendations, the governor also has a list of projects which are contingent upon the passage of legislation.  The Governor’s Plan will fund $350,000,000 in bridge repairs and reconstruction across the state, freeing up monies that may be used on other projects, such as the following proposed upgrades.  These projects total $6,420,000 and include: 

Expand Route 95 in Mountain Grove to provide three lanes from Red Spring Road to Business 60, $2,250,000; 

Install safety measures at the intersections of US 60 and Routes 99 and 19 in Birch Tree and Winona, $250,000; 

Expand Route 17/CC (Gibson Avenue) in West Plains to five lanes from US 63 to Business 63, $2,000,000; 

Implement additional safety measures at the MO 5 and Route Y intersection in Ava, $500,000; 

Construct traffic capacity improvements to alleviate heavy truck traffic congestion on Route 181 between Main Street and Bluebird Street in Cabool, $1,200,000; 

Install a turning lane from northbound US 63 on Route M, north of Koshkonong in Oregon County, $220,000. 

According to information provided by SCOCOG, Missouri is currently ranked 49th in the United States in regards to their state fuel tax levy.  The only state lower than Missouri is Alaska which does not have a fuel tax due to the state’s ability to fund project costs through oil and gas royalties.  

Timelines were not provided. 

The South Central Ozark Region is made up of seven counties with only one having a population of over 25,000.  All of the counties are Third Class. Twenty-four incorporated municipalities are contained in the region; one third class city, nineteen fourth class cities, and four villages.