Federal Dollars Paving Roads Across Alabama

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By Josh Ninke

If you're tired of potholes and old roads, you may be in luck.

Governor Robert Bentley has announced a new, third round of federal funding to give roads across the state a facelift. 

Autauga County Road 1 sees over 200 trucks carrying logs to the International Paper Mill every day. Now, thanks to federal funds and a little from the county, it's been widened and repaved. This new initiative is the first of its kind in the state.

"Well this is the largest road and bridge repair program that's ever occurred in the state of alabama. One billion dollars. What we're doing is bringing forward federal dollars and spending them now," said Governor Bentley.

The governor presented Autauga county with about $6 million in the final round of federal money. How does that compare to normal funding?

"Well if we had done it with our regular federal funding we get every year we get $500,000, that's all we get in federal aid money. This project would have had to save four years worth of money to do this project with. So this money helped us, we came in and did it all in one project," said Autauga County Engineer David Bufkin.

This is the third round of money for the ATRIP, or Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program. The governor had the goal of funding every county, and today's announcement accomplished that. 

"We were just in Colera recently and there's a new bridge that's really going to help that area. So this is going to help all of Alabama. We wanted to make sure every county got some projects and that's what's happened," said Governor Bentley.

"We're squeezing 20 years worth of money into about a three or four year time frame. That really helps because counties don't have enough money to resurface the roads so this is really going to help," said Bufkin.

There's still a lot of planning for how these roads are going to be repaved, but construction should take about four to five years.

 

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