Beginning in the new year, a team of engineers will be working with city leaders to address the street conditions within Yazoo City.
Willis Engineering will arrive in Yazoo City next month to meet with the Board of Mayor and Aldermen in an effort to compile a list of streets the city council would like to see repaired. Financial projections will also be discussed to ensure the city can address each project within its budget.
Mayor Diane Delaware said the city-wide street project has been in the works for a couple of years. She said she is excited that now is the time for the city board to start making some concrete decisions.
“During a legislative season, I will be working to acquire additional funds to match our funds,” Delaware said, during the recent city council meeting. “We have been working toward that for a while. We did get some (funds), but we did not get as much as we would have liked.”
Funds are one of the main obstacles when it comes to overall street repairs, Delaware added.
“We know that the monies that we have will not pave all of our streets,” she said. “Our streets are in very bad condition, but some are not. And the cost of paving streets versus the cash we have on hand is a big gap. You can’t borrow money to pave the streets so we will be seeking to match these funds…”
Delaware admits that fund allocation for infrastructure was disappointing.
“Infrastructure is simply not an area where funds are being allocated that much,” Delaware said. “In rural communities, are not getting a chunk of change when it comes to paving streets. But we have been fortunate that we have received some.”
Delaware said Yazoo County did show interest within Ward 1 with about a $750,000 contribution.
“However, the control of those funds is in the county’s hands to make that happen,” she said.
One street that Delaware said should be highly considered across the city board is Fifteenth Street, which is estimated to cost about $750,000 to repair. The section near the Wardell Leach Recreational Complex and Martin Luther King Drive has been an area of concern for quite some time.
“The street is too narrow and was too narrow and had no underside or curbing on the side,” Delaware said. “But whoever built it…that was what they had and that was what they did so we would like to make it better.”