Two private companies will be awarded contracts for street improvements after votes by the Pine Bluff City Council on Monday.

One of those projects will be to improve access to Jefferson Regional Hospital.

Appearing on the Oldies 1013 morning show Tuesday, Council Member Joni Alexander explained that project.

The second contract will go to Arkansas Fence and Guardrail of Little Rock for pavement striping and paint in the amount of $108,744.50.

Alexander was asked why private contractors were being used since the city has a street department and she answered this way.

Street Department manager Tom Bennett told the council Monday that improving ambulance routes to the hospital will include work from 5th Avenue to 42nd Avenue on Cherry Street, then west on 42dn Avenue to Hazel Street, and back east on Hazel from 42nd to 32nd Avenue.