FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 20, 2021
MONTGOMERY, AL – Alabama highways are busier than ever, and the Alabama Department of Transportation is using a recently awarded $10.8 million grant towards’ the agency’s work to modernize the state’s interstate system for today’s traffic volumes.
On Wednesday, April 21, weather permitting, ALDOT will start a project to replace six functionally obsolete bridges in Opelika along Interstate 85 at exit 60. The bridges over Long Street, the Norfolk Southern Railroad, and Alabama Highway 51 (Marvyn Parkway) will be replaced with new, modern bridges that have full width shoulders of approximately 8 feet, for added safety and traffic congestion relief. Acceleration lanes from exit 60 will also be extended to allow traffic to more safely merge onto I-85.
Alabama was one of only 18 states to receive a USDOT Competitive Highway Bridge Program grant. ALDOT completed an in-depth grant application that met USDOT selection criteria requirements, including innovation, support for economic vitality and project readiness.
To maximize safety and reduce the project’s impact on motorists, ALDOT is using an innovative method that will allow two travel lanes in both directions to remain open during construction. By using the existing median as a temporary travel lane, each bridge can be replaced in its current location.
Lane closures will be possible throughout the project and are permitted Sunday through Thursday from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. Lane closures will not be permitted during Auburn University’s A-Day Spring football game or during Fall home football game weekends.
Motorists are advised to drive the posted speed limit in an active work zone and to be mindful or equipment and crew members.
ALDOT awarded the $32 million project to McInnis Construction, LLC, out of Summerdale, Ala. The projected is expected to be complete by Spring 2024.
ALDOT’s mission is to provide a safe, efficient, environmentally sound transportation network across Alabama.