Pepperchase Drive extension

Southaven has awarded a $2.5 million contract to extend Pepperchase Drive south to the Medline Industries distribution center.

Southaven has awarded a $2.5 million contract to Ferrell Paving Inc. of Memphis to extend Pepperchase Drive south from the Landers Center along Interstate 55 to the Medline Industries distribution center and back out to Highway 51.

Ferrell Paving was the low bidder and will construct a 30-foot wide road that will extend Pepperchase Drive 5,500 feet to Medline’s private drive, and also includes extending Research Drive to Pepperchase Drive.

“This will be a great project,” said Mayor Darren Musselwhite. “The city received some money from MDA (Mississippi Development Authority) for the Medline development to give them another exit route to their establishment. It will be good for the city too, because it will help us with event traffic southbound instead of pumping it out onto Church Road.”

Medline, a medical supply manufacturer, built a $46 million, 1.5 million square foot distribution center between I-55 and U.S. Hwy. 51 just north of Star Landing Road that brought 450 jobs to the city.

Musselwhite said the project will cost about $1 million less than originally anticipated because the projected route for the access road was scaled back by MDOT to make way for the future I-55 Star Landing Road interchange.

“When we first got the grant initially we wanted the road to go all the way to Star Landing and be a true frontage road,” Musselwhite said. “But with the Star Landing interchange coming, they needed more right of way and it was getting crowded. MDOT pushed us back toward Hwy. 51. So the route is actually smaller and less expensive.”

The city received a grant in 2019 from Mississippi Development Authority to help with the infrastructure and roadway construction for Medline.

City Engineer Dan Cordell with Civil Link said the cost savings will be subtracted from what MDA originally authorized for the project.

“It will not require any additional funds for us to do that,” Cordell said. “But we won’t be able to use the balance on something else.” 

The project is expected to begin construction in about 60 days.

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