Written by Arkansas Real Estate
The Bella Vista Bypass has been a long awaited project in Northwest Arkansas, and April marked the first phase opening to the public. Once the project is complete it is estimated to take 4-5 thousand vehicles off of Highway 71 each day.
The Bella Vista Bypass initially is a two-lane project, but will expand to four lanes upon its completion. Over 600 million dollars has been committed to being invested into highway projects in Northwest Arkansas alone, with the Bella Vista Bypass accounting for $150.6 million dollars.
We caught up with Randy Ort, Public Information Officer with the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department, to see if he could update us on the continued phases.
"The first phase of this project opened in April of this year. Now work is underway on the west side of Hwy. 72 going north into Missouri with this part of the project being set for completion by the end of 2015. We also have contractors working on the east side of Hwy. 72 to expand up to Hwy. 71 with a completion date of early 2016," Ort said.
The Bella Vista Bypass will stretch over 14.5 miles, and will eventually be connected as part of I-49, however as part of the overall planning the last two phases to connect into this will be in cooperation with the state of Missouri.
The interim term goal of this project is to become a usable connector, and to help ease the traffic flow that we have traditionally known as a part of the bottle neck of Bella Vista's traffic patterns. While we are still a few years out from its overall completion, the progress it has already added to our area's transportation routes continues to bring positive momentum and efficiency for much needed infrastructure in Benton county.
Stay tuned each week as we continue to explore the area's transportation and growing infrastructure. We have some exciting things in the works for Northwest Arkansas.