KEYSER - Giving updates and possible future action items, Jennifer M. Walsh, executive director for The Greater Cumberland Committee, and Dave Moe, of the North/South Highway Project work group, recently spoke to the members of the Mineral County Development Authority.

By Jean Braithwaite
Tribune Correspondent
KEYSER - Giving updates and possible future action items, Jennifer M. Walsh, executive director for The Greater Cumberland Committee, and Dave Moe, of the North/South Highway Project work group, recently spoke to the members of the Mineral County Development Authority.
Moe said that he has been involved with this project for 20 years, and, “We are making progress, but not as fast as expected.”
Buck Eagle, president of the development authority, referenced a newspaper article from late 2013 that showed officials from Maryland and West Virginia had selected the route for the highway project, that when completed will serve as an opening for economic development along the route.
The project will connect Pennsylvania along U.S. Route 219 through Maryland and U.S. Route 220, to West Virginia and Corridor H, in Grant County.
Eagle called the highway project a “win, win project,” and referring to Mineral County, he added that the completed project will, “Bring more wealth into the county with improved infrastructure.”
He also said the project’s Tier II study “needs to be moving forward,” which will involve the roadway area from Route 220, below McCoole to Grant County.
Eagle said, “We have to keep this project moving and get our elected delegation onboard.”
Walsh said that recently “a renewed energy” is present to have the completion of the North/South Highway Project.
She said for a step forward follow-up meetings are recommended with Tom Smith, West Virginia State Secretary of Transportation, and Greg Slater, Maryland State of Highways administrator, concerning a late January meeting with both for “verifying key points.”
Walsh said that another recommendation would be to “secure priority status of the 220 project and key leadership organizations.”
The Mineral County Development Authority has already determined the highway project as a top priority.
Another future undertaking to further opportunities of advancing the North/South Highway project in West Virginia could be the creation of a four-county coalition to include Mineral, Hardy, Grant, and Hampshire counties.