Benton County Road Permanently Closes To Make Way For Bella Vista Bypass

BENTON COUNT (KFSM) – McMillan Road on the outskirts of Bentonville will be closed permanently starting Friday so crews can begin construction on the next phase of the Bella Vista Bypass, according to State Highway officials.

Resident Jim Wyatt said he’s lived on the county dirt road for over 40 years, and said he’s not surprised by the development.

“You know this is a nice place to live, and people want to come and live here and I don’t blame them, so we are going to have to do some of the things necessary to handle the traffic,” Wyatt said.

He said usually the road is used by people on their morning commute to avoid traffic on U.S. 71-Business.

“I’m glad it will be closed because most of the people that are coming down here don’t live here anyways, so there’s no real reason for them to come down here expect as a shortcut,” He said.

Stu Todd lives on the corner of McMillan and Howland Roads, and said he uses the road daily to get anywhere in Bentonville. He said his 30 acre property reaches to the edge of where construction is happening.

“Really there’s three ways to get here,” Todd said, “When the weather is bad, when there’s ice and snow on the roads, there’s really only two ways to get here and this is one of them…so it doesn’t completely isolate us.”

Officials with the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department said the closure of McMillan road is necessary for crews to work on embankments for the new bypass. They said the project is part of six miles of construction extending U.S. 71-B to U.S. 72 South.

Highway officials said they advise drivers to use Miller Church Road as a way to go around McMillan between the Howland Road and Punkin Hollow Road intersections.

2 comments

  • Angelene Kemp

    This is in regard to your story on the closing of McMillan rd in Benton County. I notice that you guys didn’t interview the people that the road closure is actually affecting. I assume that is because the response would be negative. There is one large property where the middle was taken and two small sections were left on either end with the highway between them. This small farm has been in the family for 4 generations and now it has been completely destroyed. In the beginning of planning, the state was going to take only a corner of the land at one end. This would have left nearly all of the beautiful open pasture for their livestock. Instead, they later decided without the input of the owners, that because of an old, dilapidated, falling down, useless barn, they had to take the prime farmland in order to preserve the “historic landmark” But then, I understand that nobody wants to hear about the destruction of one family’s property, history, memories, and way of life. Only the supposed beneficial “progress” must be reported.

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