Marshall County Commissioner Hopeful for Road Work

While road work continues in northern Marshall County along W.Va. 2, work in the southern part of the county has commissioner Bob Miller hopeful for the future.

During a recent Marshall County Commission meeting, Miller talked about a meeting he attended recently with the West Virginia Division of Highways in New Martinsville. The discussion centered on future road work between Proctor and Kent, where the highway will be widened to four lanes. With the completion of that project — expected to begin next year and wrap up in 2020 or 2021 — Miller said the new road would be a boon for the county.

“That’s going to be a huge benefit — a huge, four-lane highway from the north side to the south side of Marshall County when this is completed,” Miller said after the Tuesday meeting. “From the Ohio County line to the Mason-Dixon line.”

Miller also said he’d recently had another meeting with liaisons with the U.S. Department of Transportation in Washington, D.C. That meeting focused on the Interstate 68 initiative, which Miller has been working on for some time. The proposed I-68 expansion would create a highway system between the county and Morgantown. It also would create a corridor from the Ohio border to Baltimore and the East Coast.

“The last two years, their whole mission has changed,” he said. “It seems more like dealing with a business than with bureaucrats.”

He also said the liaisons had suggested grant opportunities to secure funding for the project. Miller said the project was attracting attention from Ohio groups, and with developing oil and gas facilities in the area, he saw improved infrastructure as vital to the region.

“The unique situation with what we’re sitting on here, with the possibility of making the U.S. energy independent, this has a major impact with commerce and the Department of Energy. … Fifteen, 20 years from now, as this grows, the phenomenal manufacturing that’s going to be coming through here, they need the transportation and we’re planning it now,” he said.

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