MONTGOMERY – Governor Kay Ivey on Tuesday announced that the Alabama Department of Transportation selected major transportation projects in Autauga and Cherokee counties, as part of the Rebuild Alabama First Year Plan 2020.
“Drivers across Alabama have experienced the troubles of the state’s crumbling infrastructure for far too long. In selecting these projects in Autauga and Cherokee counties, we’re showing that stagnation is no longer the case in Alabama,” Governor Ivey said. “For the ease of our drivers, for the safety of our drivers and for the future of our state, it’s finally time we Rebuild Alabama!”
In a cluster of Rebuild Alabama First Year Plan projects, the Alabama Department of Transportation is widening U.S. Highway 82 in Prattville, a project that this area has long been awaiting for more than 60 years. These enhancements to US 82 will shorten the daily commute of over 17,000 drivers and completes the Prattville Bypass.
“These are the first steps of many that will begin the process of Rebuild Alabama. Industry is a backbone of our economic engine, and I am pleased that Governor Ivey is moving Alabama forward with these improvements,” Sen. Clyde Chambliss said. “I firmly believe that we will look back on 2019 as a turning point in the history of our state.”
Governor Ivey, Sen. Chambliss and supporters of this legislation recognized that to have further economic growth in Alabama, it was necessary to improve the state’s infrastructure. The widening of US 82 in Prattville will improve access for loggers traveling to the International Paper plant from 18 Alabama counties. Six hundred workers from 23 Alabama counties will also find ease in their work commutes. Additionally, this project improves access to the James Hardie Building Projects Facility and the other companies in the area.
In Cherokee County, the Alabama Department of Transportation is widening U.S. Highway 411, as part of the Rebuild Alabama First Year Plan.
“The widening of US 411 has been long-awaited by the folks of Cherokee and Etowah counties, and it is vital for the economic development of this area,” Sen. Andrew Jones said. “As we begin to see dividends from the Rebuild Alabama Act, I once again thank Governor Ivey for her leadership in its passage and look forward to continually working together in the future.”
Cherokee County is one of 16 Alabama counties currently not served by a four-lane route to an interstate. This Rebuild Alabama project will fulfill a promise that the people of this area have waited for since the early 1960s.
“I appreciate and support Governor Ivey’s Rebuild Alabama plan, including investing in rural districts,” Rep. Ginny Shaver said. “Four lane access to the interstate will greatly increase economic development opportunities for new and existing industry in our area. The people have been waiting decades for this project to be completed, and Governor Ivey is the one who is getting it done!”
Beginning in January, state, county, and municipal governments in Alabama will begin to see additional revenue from the fuel tax increase of six-cents which begins in September. In fact, once the 10-cent increase is fully implemented in 2021, Autauga County will receive an additional $1.02 million dollars, on top of what they already receive, to be used for various transportation infrastructure projects. Cherokee County will see an additional $750,000 on top of what they already receive.
Governor Ivey signed into law the Rebuild Alabama Act on March 12, after it received overwhelming bipartisan support in the Alabama Legislature. The bill gradually increases Alabama’s fuel tax over the next three years.
Provided by the Office of the Governor of Alabama | governor.alabama.gov