Berryville Mayor Tim McKinney will deliver his annual state-of-the-city address later this month, but gave a preview during an interview last week. The mayor focused on rural water projects and the extension of Freeman Avenue, which will loop behind the Walmart and join U.S. 62 just west of Economy Drug.
The road project will improve access to the area west of the current elementary campus, where the school district plans extensive new construction. The city plans to build a youth soccer complex in the same area.
City workers have begun clearing the path of the new road, although the city will put the actual road construction out for bids. “We hope to have a road by summer,” McKinney said.
The city has secured easements at both ends of the project, and the mayor said he does not anticipate problems in acquiring remaining easements.
“We’ll do most of the work on the soccer fields ourselves,” McKinney said. The city will build six new youth soccer fields, and continue to maintain the adult soccer field at the Community Center. City workers will also relocate a water main that runs underneath the area of new school construction.
Berryville will soon take bids on rural water projects, and McKinney said he expects construction to start in spring. The mayor said he has not decided whether to break the water project into several contracts or issue it as a single package.
Initial phases of the project will likely focus on the area of County Road 501, where the city will upgrade an existing line. The early construction will also provide a new tap from the Carroll-Boone water supply in the Shady Grove area west of Berryville.