July 20, 2010 9:02:00 AM
Most Oktibbeha County residents outside Starkville city limits are on the verge of receiving new street addresses.
While no road names will be changed, the Golden Triangle Planning and Development District is in the process of establishing new street address numbers for homes and businesses throughout Oktibbeha County. Addresses inside Starkville city limits will remain the same, but most locations throughout the rest of the county will receive new address numbers, said District 4 Supervisor Daniel Jackson.
The county contracted the Golden Triangle Planning and Development District to work on its comprehensive plan and clear up inconsistencies in street addresses which make it difficult for emergency responders to find locations when dispatched, Jackson said.
Addresses on some roads in the county are out of order. On others, odd and even addresses are found on the same side of the road. And while the current system uses a grid to establish addresses, which has led to the same address being found twice on the same road, though in different sections or townships, the new system will establish addresses based on their distance from the end of the road.
For instance, the one-mile stretch of Highway 12 which begins at the Choctaw County line and runs east toward Sturgis would be the 1000 block. The second mile-long stretch would be the 2000 block, while the third mile would be the 3000 block and so forth, Jackson said.
Additionally, if at least three residences are located on an unmarked road or private drive, they will receive addresses for E-911 purposes. Supervisors now are in the process of naming the county''s unmarked or private drives.
Approximately 100 roads are yet to be named, said Toby Sanford, Geographical Information Systems Manager for the Golden Triangle Planning and Development District.
"I didn''t realize how difficult it would be ...," District 2 Supervisor Orlando Trainer said.
During the fall of 2007, the previous Oktibbeha County Board of Supervisors signed contracts with the Golden Triangle Planning and Development District to work on the county''s comprehensive plan and tackle the address problem, Jackson said. The GTPDD has since traveled all the roads in the county and took photos of every structure for the project.
Dispatchers, ambulances, fire trucks and police will receive updated maps and photos of structures throughout the county when the new addresses are implemented, Jackson said.
The GTPDD is now waiting on supervisors to submit their lists of road names. Sanford said he expects that to happen in the next few months. Then the county will notify residents of their new addresses, he said.
Jackson acknowledged the fact that some residents might not want a new address, but stressed it is necessary to ensure emergency responders can find homes and businesses when they''re dispatched.
"It can be the difference between life and death if somebody is having a heart attack at one end (of the road) and the ambulance is at the other end because both houses have the same address," Jackson said.