ARDOT looking to replace the bridge over Hicks Creek near Mountain Home

The Arkansas Department of Transportation (ARDOT) will soon present a proposed plan to replace a bridge in Mountain Home.
Published: Sep. 21, 2022 at 5:22 PM CDT
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MOUNTAIN HOME, Ark. (KY3) - The Arkansas Department of Transportation (ARDOT) will soon present a proposed plan to replace a bridge in Mountain Home.

An in-person public involvement meeting addressing the Hicks Creek bridge on Arkansas Highway 5 will be held Thursday, beginning at 4 p.m. at East Side Baptist Church.

The Hicks Creek Bridge was built in 1929 as a concrete tee beam structure. Since then, it has undergone several renovations and resurfacing projects.

“We’ve been here for 41 years this past June, and the highway at that time was sufficient for what we’re doing, and the bridge was small, but it was okay,” said Carl Wayne Wooldridge, a business owner located near the bridge.

Wooldridge says during his tenure in Mountain Home. He has continued to see the area develop and thinks improvements to the road his business is located on are needed.

“I think the last appraisals we’ve had on one of these properties is showing about 12,000 cars a day on 5 South,” he said. “So that just shows how much this road is used, especially traffic that comes in off of the bypass.”

Almost all of that traffic goes across the Hicks Creek Bridge.

“It’s outlived its lifespan. It’s deteriorating to the point we really feel we need to replace it instead of trying to maintain it and throw money at it,” said Stacy Burge, ARDOT District 9 construction engineer.

The Arkansas Department has proposed a new bridge that would widen the bridge to three lanes and add pedestrian sidewalks.

“I’m not sure that the numbers actually are pushing the replacement; it’s more the function of the bridge not being able to meet any traffic needs,” said Burge.

“Even though it’s gonna interfere with our retail business for x-amount of time, don’t really know; but yeah, we’re willing to sacrifice that time to get this improved,” said Wooldridge.

The proposal is the first phase in a bigger project currently in the works to widen all Highway 5 South within the city limits of Mountain Home.

“The city of Mountain Home has actually agreed to take over that section of Highway 5 when we’re done,” said Burge. “They’re going to make it a city street and make it three lanes, I believe.”

The public can view meeting materials and provide written comments through Oct. 6 at 4:30 p.m. A pre-recorded presentation will be available here. The site offers the same project information and handouts available at the in-person meeting, and a Spanish translation will also be available.

Anyone seeking further information about the project can contact Karla Sims at 501-569-2949 or karla.sims@ardot.gov.

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