Ivey Announces $40 Million in New Road Projects, West Alabama Mostly Misses Out
Governor Kay Ivey announced she will award more than $40 million for 33 new road projects across the state, although West Alabama mostly missed out on this round of funding.
The grants come from the Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program-II, which was created by Ivey's landmark Rebuild Alabama Act. Every year, the state puts aside at least $30 million of new gas tax revenue for projects of local interest on the state highway system.
“I am proud to announce the largest round of local funding since the passage of the Rebuild Alabama Act as I close out my first term and gear up to begin the next four years,” Ivey said in a statement. “Our decision to address Alabama’s infrastructure challenges is paying major dividends in several vital areas, and I am thrilled to continue building on this momentum by moving forward this year’s projects.”
The money will fund projects in 23 of Alabama's 67 counties, although few of them will have an impact in West Alabama.
In Tuscaloosa County, Ivey awarded $2 million to fund intersection improvements on Interstate 20/59 at Exit 89 at the Mercedes Benz U.S. International plant. Those improvements are to include new through lanes, turn lanes and a traffic signal.
In Fayette County, the state will spend $850,000 to widen the northeast and northwest parts of Alabama Highway 171 where it meets Highway 18, with a specific aim of improving truck turning movements.
Another $400,000 will go to Bibb County to realign County Road 1 with State Route 5 and add right turn lanes on State Route 5.
No projects were announced for Greene, Hale, Lamar or Pickens Counties.
Ivey said she expects a number of the 33 projects will be under contract this fiscal year, but did not specify ones.
All projects are required to move forward within two years of the awarding of funds, she said in a press release.
Don't go thinking this means there will be a shortage of road work in the area this year, though -- Ivey's Rebuild Alabama project to add lanes to Highway 82 north of the Black Warrior River continues, ALDOT is likely to begin major work on Highway 69 at Skyland Boulevard this year, and the state just secured $100 million to replace the Woolsey Finnel Bridge, just to name a few big-ticket items on the docket.
For updates on these projects and more as they develop, stay connected to the Tuscaloosa Thread.