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SPRINGDALE -- The Arkansas Department of Transportation has extended the comment period for the proposed widening of Arkansas 112.

The department will continue to accept comments through Jan. 15. The comment period was initially set to close Jan. 1.

The public is invited to listen, view meeting materials, and provide written comments at the highway department website: https://vpiph02-virtual-lobby-012305-090513-090514-ardot.hub.arcgis.com/ .

The website has project materials and handouts that would have been shown at in-person meetings. A separate link provides a Spanish version of the presentation. There is also an option to send online comment forms to ARDOT staff, or print the form and mail it to Environmental Division, 10324 Interstate 30, Little Rock, AR 72209. Residents can also contact Karla Sims at (501) 569-2000 or [email protected] to ask questions.

The proposed widening of Arkansas 112 to four lanes could have significant effect on historic downtown Cave Springs and two subdivisions in Bentonville, depending on the route selected.

Making Arkansas 112 a major north/south connection in coming years is part of the regional Transportation Improvement Program for Northwest Arkansas. The road envisioned would be four lanes divided by a median with sidewalks on either side. There would be breaks about every quarter mile.

Highway officials in mid-December held two well-attended online input sessions showing alternative routes for two sections of the road.

The project will create a thoroughfare that will be walkable, bikable and transit-ready, according to highway officials. Safety measures will include access management, which is limiting where cars can enter the road; raised medians to divide traffic; and roundabouts aimed at reducing serious injury and fatality crashes.

The primary purpose of the improvements is to allow the road to carry significant local and regional traffic.

A 2015 study of Arkansas 112 tentatively recommended four lanes from Fayetteville to Bentonville, widening and straightening several curves and bypassing at least one town, Cave Springs.

On either end, Bentonville and Fayetteville have already implemented raised medians, turn lanes, limited curb cuts, signal spacing and other access management strategies on portions of the road.

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