Chickasaw Road may open by month’s end

Published 8:00 am Saturday, April 1, 2023

Chickasaw Road, located near Molly Barr Road and Cincinnatus Boulevard has been under construction since the middle of February. Engineers hoped for the road to be fully re-constructed by this month, however, the original April 15 opening date is under reconsideration. 

North bound traffic wanting to drive down Molly Barr Road and turn off onto Chickasaw Road have been asked to detour to Cincinnatus Boulevard and south bound traffic has been asked to detour to North Lamar Boulevard. 

The road closed for the installation of cross drains on each side of Molly Barr to expedite the construction for a much-needed roundabout. 

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“Progress has been slower than planned due to multiple rain events and a drainage conflict that took additional time to resolve,” City Engineer Reanna Mayoral said. 

Because the intersection between Molly Barr Road and Chickasaw Road was skewed and confusion from traffic when turning onto Chickasaw occurred, the city thought a roundabout would help ease the traffic flow. The roundabout will essentially provide a much easier transition onto each road, considering the amount of curves on Molly Barr and the amount of traffic the city faces when guests arrive. 

The new roundabout is also being put into place to help with access to The Lamar development “in a safe manner,” Mayoral said. 

Molly Barr sees between 10,000 to 13,000 cars each day according to traffic numbers from the Mississippi Department of Transportation. 

“The density of traffic varies throughout the day which makes a roundabout an ideal candidate for this intersection,” Mayoral said. “A roundabout provides for the continuous movement of traffic without the same delays necessitated by a traffic signal.  This is especially useful in Oxford as our traffic volume peaks vary dramatically depending on the time and season.”

The construction of this new roundabout is initially being funded by The Lamar Development as part of a Tax Increment Financing (“TIF”) agreement between the City and the developer, Mac Monteith. 

Mayoral urges drivers to proceed to drive through Molly Barr and the construction site with caution and a slower speed for the safety of the workers onsite. She also stated that drivers will soon notice an increase in activity as the relocation of power lines and construction of curb and gutter will begin in the coming weeks.