Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

County Commission, ALDOT Look to Widen Highway 69 South

Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

County Commission, ALDOT Look to Widen Highway 69 South

Article excerpt

TUSCALOOSA | Tuscaloosa County Commissioner Bobby Miller will call on the commission today to pass a resolution supporting an Alabama Department of Transportation project to widen Alabama Highway 69 South from Skyland Boulevard to the intersection of Old Greensboro Road south of Shelton State Community College.

Miller; Rep. John Merrill, R-

Tuscaloosa; Sen. Gerald Allen, R-Cottondale; and County Engineer Bobby Hagler met last week with ALDOT Division Engineer Dee Rowe to discuss plans to relieve traffic congestion on Highway 69 South. Rowe presented a $40 million proposal that would widen the road through the most congested areas. She asked for a resolution from the commission in support, Miller said.

"It was a good meeting," Miller said. "Dee Rowe and her staff seem more than willing to help. They are aware of the problem."

Merrill also said he was optimistic about the project.

"We're excited about the support we're receiving from the Department of Transportation," Merrill said. "Commissioner Miller, Sen. Allen and I are committed to making sure this becomes a reality."

Rowe did not respond to questions emailed to her from The Tuscaloosa News.

Two projects would be aimed at offering immediate relief. State maintenance crews will undertake a $200,000 widening of Highway 69 from Skyland Boulevard to a point south of Kauloosa Avenue, according to information provided by ALDOT to the Tuscaloosa County Engineering Office.

Also, a project to add dedicated left turn lanes and a right turn lane to Bear Creek Road at its intersection with Highway 69 should begin in late spring at a cost of about $500,000. It is intended to relieve traffic backups on Bear Creek Road. With no current turn lanes or dedicated left turn signal at the intersection, traffic sometimes backs up to Bear Creek Cutoff Road, Hagler said.

"It takes one car turning left to completely back traffic up," Hagler said.

The widening project will be conducted in four phases, each costing $9 million to $12 million and covering a little more than a mile. The phases would start on the southern end of the project area and work its way toward Skyland Boulevard. …

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