Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao announced $38-million in federal transportation grants for Mississippi.

The monies were awarded under the BUILD (Better Utilizing Investment to Leverage Development) grant program.

Twenty-five million will be used to widen Mississippi 19 to four lanes stretching from Meridian to Philadelphia.

Thirteen million has been designated for improvements to Holly Springs Road. The DeSoto County road has damaged by overuse and chronic flooding. Crews will elevate the roadway, replace five bridges and realign dangerous hairpin curves.

“The competition for BUILD grant funds is intense, which makes these awards to Neshoba and DeSoto counties special. These two projects are intended to improve public safety and increase the attractiveness of these areas for growth,” said Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, who serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee. “We’ll continue to work to find additional resources to support Mississippi’s infrastructure needs.”

Sen. Roger Wicker says the projects are also meant as an economic stimulus.

“The grants announced today will support two high-priority infrastructure projects for Mississippi,” Wicker said. “I commend the Department of Transportation and Secretary Elaine Chao for recognizing the importance of these projects, which will be essential to ensuring the safety of thousands of Mississippians and continued economic development along these well-traveled corridors.”