Route 671 widening under way

Published 10:12 am Wednesday, January 2, 2013

A logging truck drives through the construction zone of the $2 million widening project on General Thomas Highway outside of Franklin. -- ANDREW FAISON/TIDEWATER NEWS


FRANKLIN—The widening of a one-mile portion of General Thomas Highway in the Franklin/Southampton area has been a priority for many years, said Southampton County Administrator Mike Johnson.

“To see this project come to fruition for the county is gratifying,” Johnson said.

The Virginia Department of Transportation contracted the project out to Curtis Contracting, Inc., from West Point for $2 million. Increase the two-lane stretch to five lanes is intended to better support the growing industrial presence in the area. The project runs from Delaware Road to Shady Brook Trail on Route 671.

VDOT already widened an adjacent portion of General Thomas.

“Transportation access is a priority amongst industries when they look at an area,” Johnson said. “This will make sites along that corridor more attractive.”

Amanda Jarratt, president and chief operating officer for Franklin Southampton Economic Development Inc. agrees that the widening will add to the ability to market the industrial corridor.

“We are excited about the widening and what it means for future industrial projects along that corridor,” Jarratt said.

The entire project, which started in October, remains on schedule for a July 18 completion, said Kris Purzycki, public information officer with VDOT in Suffolk.