EMBDC Says Road Closure Good for Business

Efforts are underway to increase safety for a local business, and possibly grow new business.

The East Mississippi Business Development Corporation is calling for a portion of Valley Road, from I-20/59 to 31st Avenue South, to be closed. Business officials say it would be beneficial.

The area that would be affected is the portion of Valley Road located off the interstate, past the Pilot Truck Stop.

If approved it would start at a bridge just yards away from Atlas Roofing. If the closure takes effect, only traffic for Atlas will be able to go beyond that point.

EMBDC officials say this would help Atlas Roofing in more ways than one.

"Atlas has been in Meridian 50 years, and in that time, they have grown to encompass both sides of Valley Road and the through traffic has been an issue, mostly related to speeding," said Skip Scaggs, business development manager at the EMBDC.

Scaggs says closure would make the area more safe for Atlas employees and the general public, and hopefully, make it more enticing for further expansion.

"If you can identify or eliminate those problem areas, we give them a better chance of staying open and competing where they may have sister plants, competing in inter-corporate rivalries where they may have sister plants that process the same product," said Scaggs.

Scaggs says it will likely be late November or early December before the Lauderdale County Board of Supervisors votes on whether or not to close that portion of Valley Road.

The public will have opportunities to share their views on the proposal. There is a meeting Oct. 27 at 6 p.m. at South Volunteer Fire Department. Another is scheduled for Nov. 5 at 6 p.m. at Union Station.

Do you think a portion of Valley Road near Atlas Roofing should be closed?

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Anonymous on Oct 27, 2009 at 07:45 PM
    As I remember (it has been awhile)-they rely HEAVILY on trains to deliver materials. Do these places have train tracks on site? Some things just aren't as simple as we would like to make them.
  • by Anonymous One Location: Meridian on Oct 25, 2009 at 12:55 PM
    What about the land owners who have property on this road to be closed? Is Atlas trying to get additional land cheap because peoples land will be cut off by a closed road? Why does EMBDC not try to move Atlas to that site the county spent 10 million dollars for that is not coming? This smells of fish. Old dead fish.
  • by Greg Location: marion on Oct 24, 2009 at 07:33 PM
    Uhh, Me, we're talking about an existing business and helping it prosper. What's wrong with that? Close down that street!!!!
  • by Anonymous on Oct 24, 2009 at 07:25 PM
    The EMBDC has spoken. The people of Valley Road don't have a chance. Has Atlas asked for this closure? Has Atlas guaranteed they will not close in the next 10 or 20 years if this road is closed?
  • by Anonymous on Oct 24, 2009 at 07:18 PM
    Concerned, you make too much good sense for Meridian. Psst...folks, Meridian is a ghost town.
  • by me Location: meridian on Oct 23, 2009 at 08:19 PM
    Its always for the possibly to grow new business, but none never materializes. Unfortunately, Meridian will never change.
  • by Concerned Location: meridian on Oct 23, 2009 at 04:41 PM
    Another Boondoggle by EMBDC. There are plenty of empty industrial buildings and industrial sites in the county. With all the concern of losing another industry (and 210 jobs), why not build or provide the company a building and procure state of the art equipment and sell or lease back to the company with appropriate terms and guarantees.
  • by unknown Location: Valley Road on Oct 23, 2009 at 03:25 PM
    To the people living on Valley Road, closing it is like the City removing the 22nd Avenue bridge for ever. Atlas Roofing has plenty of land to expand without closing the road. The only traffic problems are caused by the trucks parking in the road and not yeilding to the traffic on Valley Road.
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