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SPRINGDALE -- The Northwest Arkansas Planning Commission is taking the initiative to fill in the missing section of Interstate 49 around Bella Vista by applying for a federal grant to help cash-strapped Missouri finish its part of the project.

The Bella Vista Bypass is now officially called the Missouri/Arkansas Interstate 49 Connector Project to better denote its regional significance.

The entire project, on both sides of the line, is within the commission's jurisdiction.

Missouri is about $32.4 million short of having enough money to build its 4.8 mile portion. Environmental work is done, right-of-way has been acquired and the plans for the project are done.

One lane of just more than 11 miles is completed on the Arkansas side of the project.

The commission will ask for the money from a Department of Transportation grant program known as Infrastructure for Rebuilding America. The $1.5 billion in discretionary money is earmarked for projects that involve moving freight. The program leverages local and state money for projects such as highways and ports.

NW News on 09/27/2017

Print Headline: Planners going for federal money to finish Bella Vista Bypass

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