County secures $300K for road

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 22, 2018

Will provide alternate route from Pigeon Creek Bridge

The Covington County Commission will be able to construct an alternate route for those residents no longer to use Pigeon Creek Bridge thanks to a cost-sharing agreement with the Alabama Department of Transportation.

County engineer Lynn Ralls closed the bridge in September after and Alabama Department of Transportation Bridge Inspection Team ruled that the bridge was unsafe. The bridge was posted and barricaded,

“The bridge will be closed until further notice. All signs and barricades are posted in accordance with regulations. If anyone has any questions, please feel free to call the Covington County Engineers Office at 334-428-2620,” Ralls said.

The 88-year-old bridge was posted with a three-ton weight limit, but it was almost impossible to enforce. The bridge is located on Lloyd Mill Road. The county estimated it would cost $2.5 to $3 million to replace it.

But area residents continued to raise concerns about the need for an alternate route after the bridge was closed, which led the county to begin seeking an alternative route and right-of-way acquisition.

This week, the plan to build an alternate route became official with the announcement the state – which abandoned the bridge when the new Hwy. 55 was built – would assist with the cost of an alternate route.

ALDOT agreed to match the county’s funds for the project. The county will pay $300,000 and ALDOT will pay $300,000.

“We are still waiting on the right of way acquisition for the alternate route,” Ralls said Wednesday. “But we secured funding from the state for the project.”

“We are making some headway in the Pigeon Creek project by securing these funds,” Ralls said. “I have got the alignment designed and now we are just waiting for the right of way. I think we are moving in the right direction though.”