W. Jackson Ave. needs attention

Published 12:00 pm Friday, June 10, 2016

Recently, Mayor Pat Patterson quoted some figures he received from the Mississippi Department of Transportation that showed West Jackson Avenue, on average, had more cars traveling it than Barnes Crossing Road in Tupelo.

He said MDOT reported that Barnes Crossing Road has 22,500 cars per day and that Jackson Avenue has 24,000 cars a day.

City planners are hoping to avoid some of the same mistakes made along the busy avenue on future commercial corridors by putting in stricter guidelines in the new comprehensive plan currently being developed. New roads being built today are being done under the city’s Complete Street Policy, which suggests all roads have bike and pedestrian paths. Planners are requiring fewer curb cuts on developing boulevards like North and South Lamar.

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Moving forward, those areas will hopefully have more careful planning implemented as more commercial and residential developments are built.

But what about West Jackson Avenue? Are residents just stuck with the mess, and sometimes dangerous roadway?

The city and University of Mississippi have and continue to, work together on several projects since much of the growth occurring in Oxford is because of the school’s growth. Perhaps it’s time for them to sit down together again and find a way to make needed improvements along Oxford’s busiest avenue.

Sure, it will cost some money, but with all the new projects on campus, and new roads being built in the city, together, there should be a way to find the funding to make West Jackson Avenue safer and less congested.