Study starts on upgrading WKY Parkway to an interstate spur


GREENVILLE, Ky. (WEHT) The past few years has seen many western Kentucky parkways become interstates or interstate spurs.

Another one, the Western Kentucky Parkway, could become another spoke on the wheel. A study, on transforming the parkway, begins.

“All around us, there are a lot of spurs going in for the I-69 corridor,” said Gary Jones of the Muhlenberg Alliance for Progress.

For places along the Western Kentucky Parkway between I-69 and I-165, the wait continues for a spur to go through their communities.

“We don’t really feel like we’re being left out, but we want to be sure we’re included,” Jones says.

An upgrade study on changing the parkway between I-69 in Hopkins County and I-165 in Ohio County into an interstate spur started earlier this summer. It’s looking at existing conditions, including bridges and overpasses, accident rates, and sections needing improvements.

Jones says making the parkway an interstate spur will help attract different industries as some shut down.

“We feel that with the closure of the coal plants in our area, the power plants, we want to get this on the map and get some new industry into Muhlenberg. We feel like this is a part of that puzzle that can help us with that,” he adds.

“I just feel like it will make our community grow here for one. Have more traffic coming through here because will be following I-65,” says Debra Ross of Ohio County.

The study happens as the Natcher Parkway became I-165 and a part of the old pennyrile parkway in Christian and Hopkins Counties becomes I-169. Construction will depend on available funding.

“It’s going up all around us and other people are getting it, and we didn’t want to be left out of it,” Jones says.

While any transformation on the parkway to an interstate spur could be years down the road, Jones says the study could be done as early as next Spring.

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