With the relocation of some utility infrastructure now complete, work has begun on a Marion County road extension project just outside of Palmyra.

With the relocation of some utility infrastructure now complete, work has begun on a Marion County road extension project just outside of Palmyra.

According to Lyndon Bode, presiding commissioner, county personnel started the half-mile extension of County Road 266 earlier this week. When completed County Road 266 will connect with Business Highway 61.

“It will be a straight road going east/west starting at Business Highway 61 going west to state Route C,” said Bode in a media release issued early Friday.

One of the purposes of the new section of road is to “help traffic flow and create better economic development in Marion County,” said the commissioner.

“By creating the new roadway this will allow farm machinery and truck traffic an easier way to get around Palmyra instead of going down main street and Highway 168 directly through the center of town,” said Bode. “The new road addition will also help spur economic growth on the south end of Palmyra by creating access to new areas of development and growth.”

The project began almost 11 months after it was announced by the commission. Work did not begin sooner because of some hurdles that had to be cleared. The county had to secure permission from the Missouri Department of Transportation to create an intersection at Business 61. Some utility infrastructure also had to be relocated from the project's path. That utility work was still ongoing earlier this week.

Now that work has begun the objective is to have the road project completed by the middle of October.

The project would have remained a dream without the participation of the Dearing and Griesbaum families. Last October it was announced that the Griesbaums were contributing 1.5 to 2 acres of land while the Dearings were giving just under an acre of farm land. Thanks to their donations no county funds had to be spent on land acquisition for the project.

Last October Bode estimated the project would cost in the neighborhood of $70,000.

Reach reporter Danny Henley at danny.henley@courierpost.com