LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The I-630 expansion project may have already broken ground but it’s already facing a legal challenge that was heard today in court.
A federal lawsuit argues the State Department of Transportation did not do a necessary environmental study before taking on such a project.
Today, the case was scheduled for a hearing on a temporary restraining order to halt construction until such a study could be done.
However a last minute change of judge caused today’s hearing to be simply a briefing of the issues.
The plaintiff’s attorney says that a project of this scale, expanding 630 to four lanes each way for more than two miles, should have to consider impacts on things like traffic patterns and pollution.
The state told the judge this project did not require such a study under the law.
“They waited until last week to say they were starting a 90 million dollar construction project a week later so i don’t feel we’ve had a lack of diligence,” says environmental attorney Richard Mays.
The judge decided to hear arguments on whether or not to stop the construction project on Monday.
Until that time the Arkansas Department of Transportation can continue its work.