EL DORADO, Ark. (KTVE/KARD)–The ‘Tip of the Cap’ event took place in El Dorado Thursday afternoon to celebrate highway improvements through Southern Arkansas.

This first ‘Tip of the CAP’ event included celebrating the completion of widening the Highway 167 Corridor between Little Rock and El Dorado along with other highway improvements in Southern Arkansas like Highways 82 and 425.

In 2012, Arkansas voters approved a constitutional amendment that established a 10-year, half-cent sales tax to be used for road and bridge improvements. This resulted in the Connecting Arkansas Program; also known as CAP, which is one of the largest highway construction programs undertaken by the Arkansas Department of Transportation.

“Thanks to the support of the Arkansas State Legislature, Governor and ultimately the approval by Arkansas voters, the last 10 years have generated $1.8 billion, funding 31 projects and 200 miles of roadway and bridge improvements,” explained ARDOT Director Lorie Tudor.

For El Dorado residents who regularly travel to Magnolia, that construction zone may be a nightmare for them but Tudor explains it will be worth the wait.

“It’s going to be walkable and bikeable. We are going to have some landscaping and we are going to put the utilities underground to make it more aesthetically pleasing. It’s just going to be something to be really proud of and just expand on what the city of El Dorado has already done in making this area so attractive and welcoming to visitors and the citizens.”

ARDOT expects to see a completion date for Highway 82 in 2023.

Coming this fall, more ‘Tip of the CAP’ events are planned to commemorate and celebrate the progress made in other regions of the Natural State because of the significant public investment in the state’s roads and bridges.