Mountain Parkway ‘one step closer,’ Beshear says

Published 4:05 pm Friday, January 26, 2024

Gov. Andy Beshear announced on Friday another step forward in the Mountain Parkway expansion project, federal approval of the Supplemental Environmental Assessment for public review.

Signed by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), this identifies the recommended alignment of the last segment of the Mountain Parkway Expansion, a 13-mile stretch between Salyersville and Prestonsburg. See the map that accompanies this story.

“The approval of this document moves us one step closer to completing this much-anticipated highway,” Beshear said. “Now, every section of the Mountain Parkway Expansion is completed, under construction or under contract. We are delivering a promise to the people of Eastern Kentucky to create a new connection that sets the region up for economic growth and success for generations.”

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The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) has been working in partnership with the FHWA to complete the Supplemental Environmental Assessment, which included field surveys, archaeological and historical studies and biological research on the recommended cross-country alignment. These assessments are required to evaluate the environmental impacts of all federally funded projects and are essential steps to advancing projects toward construction.

“Team Kentucky is fulfilling a promise not just to the people of Eastern Kentucky but to the entire commonwealth,” said Transportation KYTC Secretary Jim Gray. “Our team has worked tirelessly to complete this environmental document so that we can continue to move the project forward toward construction and then completion.”

In September 2022, Gov. Beshear announced that the preferred alignment for the final segment, known as Magoffin-Floyd, would be a new cross-country route instead of expanding the current Kentucky Highway 114 corridor. This option would cause fewer disruptions and property impacts to homes and businesses. A map of the final section can be found here.

The immediate next step is to solicit public comment on the Supplemental Environmental Assessment. KYTC is accepting public comments on the document through Monday, Feb. 26. The public may submit comments via mail at the address below, via email at info@mtnparkway.com, or by phone at (606) 666-8841.

KYTC District 10

Attn: Aric Skaggs, P.E.

P.O. Box 621

Jackson, KY 41339

The Mountain Parkway Expansion will close the only gap in a 400-mile, four-lane, high-speed corridor for commerce and mobility across Kentucky from Pikeville to Paducah.

The project will widen 32 miles of the existing parkway to four lanes and extend the parkway by 13 miles between Salyersville to Prestonsburg.