Interstate Interchange Cleanup Effort

Lauderdale County supervisors are working with city leaders in Meridian to clear tall weeds and grass away from a fence near the 29th Avenue interchange. However, along with that work, some other major developments are taking place in that area.

'If you can see along the fence line that's a hotel there and it should be cleaned up anyway.'

Lauderdale County Board of Supervisor President, Joe Norwood, says that's part of what's prompting a major cleanup effort along the 29th Avenue interstate interchange.

Currently, much of the fence that separates Mt. Barton Apartments from a hotel is covered with tall weeds and overgrown grass. However, Supervisor Norwood says the plan is to have all of the tall weeds and grass gone and a much clearer view of the interstate within the next year.

'We're making a great investment in this community and we want it cleaned.'

Part of that investment is in Multi-County Community Service Agency, which serves 9 counties. For the estimated $1.5 million project, Lauderdale County supervisors are providing $600,000; the agency must pay the rest. With much of the dirt work now done, Norwood anticipates that official construction at the site could start within the next sixty days.

As for the agency's former building, which is located directly across from the new site, most of it now sits idle. However, that could change.

'We've had a structural engineer take a look at the building. We have had a roofer take a look at the building. We have had it checked for asbestos,' says Norwood. 'We're just trying to come up with what needs to be done to the building. Do we need to remove the building? Is the building worth renovating? That's what we're look at right now.'

So far, aside from problems with the roof, the structural engineer's review identifies the building as being one of the most solid buildings in the county.

Norwood is optimistic that most, if not all, of the cleanup work and construction in that area will be finished by this time next year.

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