The route then runs due east near Swifton through AR 18 in Cash, also meeting AR 349 near Jonesboro. Highway 226 winds into Jonesboro, meeting US 63/AR 18 and terminating. US 67 traffic is currently routed onto AR 226 while the AHTD continues to build US 67 to interstate standards. The limited access portion of US 67 currently ends at AR 226 between Cash and Swifton, and AR 226 is being used to redirect traffic from the new route to the old alignment. The route is two-lane undivided for most of its length, passing through flat, square farmland.
In 2012, construction was completed that widened four miles of the highway to a four-lane divided facility from the highway's intersection with U.S. 67 to just west of Cash. This was the first section of a larger plan that will ultimately widen Highway 226 to four lanes divided from U.S. 67 to U.S. 49 near Gibson. Once completed, this widening project will give motorists a four-lane, divided route the entire length from Little Rock to Jonesboro.
The route became a state highway in 1958, running from an area south of Swifton east to Gibson. AR 226 was later extended to Jonesboro, including a concurrency with Arkansas Highway 39 (now US 49). When US 49 replaced AR 39 around 1980, AR 226 was split into its current alignment and AR 226S. The short Jackson County segment was added to the system in 1996.