Mississippi State University is more accessible to visitors coming from the south now that Hail State Boulevard, the university’s new south entrance road, is officially open.

MSU, Mississippi Department of Transportation and local officials celebrated the new 3.5-mile road, which will increase accessibility to the southern end of campus and improve traffic flow.

“This road is a nice new addition that opens up this whole corridor of the campus,” said MSU President Mark E. Keenum. “It’s not just important to the university and our future growth, but for the whole community, Starkville and Oktibbeha County. I’m thrilled about this project.”

Hail State Boulevard will allow campus visitors arriving from Highway 25 to take a more direct route to MSU. Bypassing MSU’s South Farm, Hail State Boulevard connects Poorhouse Road near the Mississippi Horse Park to Stone Boulevard and Blackjack Road.

MSU and MDOT worked together to build the $18 million road, with federal funds administered by MDOT paying for 80 percent of the road and MSU paying for the remaining 20 percent. Eutaw Construction was the contractor for the project.

Hail State Boulevard is part of MSU’s updated football gameday postgame traffic plans.

Read more about MSU’s new gameday pedestrian safety measures here.