The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) in Frankfort has approved the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the construction of I-66 between US 23 south of Pikeville, in Pike County Kentucky and the King Coal Highway in Mingo County West Virginia. The FEIS received official approval on March 20, 2003. Distribution and public availability of the FEIS began in early April and comments on the document will be accepted until May 23, 2003. The FEIS can be examined in the project area at the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) District Office in Pikeville at 109 Loraine Street, at the Pikeville Public Library, and at the Williamson, West Virginia Public Library. The document can also be reviewed at the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Offices and at the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) Offices both in Frankfort Kentucky, as well as at the West Virginia Division of Highways Offices in Charleston, West Virginia.
Upon expiration of the FEIS comment period on May 27, 2003, the FHWA will prepare a Record Of Decision (ROD) for the project. This ROD will provide responses to any comments received on the FEIS and will record the action of approval for the location of I-66 in Pike and Mingo counties. Notification of FHWA approval of the ROD, signifying project location approval, will be published in local area newspapers and in a newspaper of statewide circulation. Following approval of the ROD, the I-66 Appalachian Corridor project can be advanced into the final highway design phase, followed by the right-of-way acquisition and utilities relocation phase, and on into the construction phase.