South Three Notch project will take year

Published 1:02 am Wednesday, February 6, 2013

It will likely be January or February of 2015 before a project to refurbish South Three Notch – for which the City of Andalusia has been granted $8.6 million – is finished, if everything goes “hunky dory.”

That’s the message the Andalusia City Council got from Mayor Earl Johnson and engineer Tim Ramsden of CDG Engineering Tuesday.

The funds were announced by Gov. Robert Bentley Monday in the third round of ATRIP awards. Andalusia’s was the fourth-largest grant awarded in the state.

City leaders are working with financial advisors on the best way to locally fund its $2.1 million portion of the project, but will likely need a bond issue to raise the matching funds for the project, Johnson said.

But the city won’t need as much cash as previous grant projects have required.

Normally, when municipalities receive state funding, the projects are let, and the state reimburses municipalities for its portion of the expenses.

Ramsden explained that once design work is completed and “blessed” by state Department of Transportation officials, the state actually will let bids for the ATRIP projects. The state will then pay contractors and the local governments will reimburse the state for their 20 percent matches.

Ramsden said as currently designed, the project includes upgrades to the street, including paving, sidewalks and curbs, as well as installing underground utilities and upgrading existing water, sewerage and gas lines. Decorative lighting also will be installed.

He said he expects South Three Notch will be a two-lane road from the railroad tracks to the crest of the hill, then a three-lane road with a turning lane as it transitions to the hospital, with four lanes leading to the bypass. However, it could be changed to be three lanes from the hospital to the bypass. Much will depend upon a formal traffic study at Andalusia Regional Hospital and Moore Road, he said.

The project will be similar in scope to the recent River Falls Street project, Ramsden said, estimating that the South Three Notch will take 10 to 14 months.