Lack of Funding May Lead to Highway Headaches

Lack of Funding May Lead to Highway Headaches

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Baldwin County Commissioners are looking for ways to fund more highway projects.  The projected growth in population is naturally leading to more traffic.  But a lack of state and federal funding is causing several major projects to be pushed back by several years.

The Baldwin County Metropolitan Planning Organization is studying several options to hopefully make up for funding needed for at least five major projects.  One of those, the widening of U.S. Highway 31 through Spanish Fort is actually ready for work to begin.  Right of ways and other infrastructure work has been completed.

Matthew Brown with the MPO says other projects include the completed four lane project of Highway 181.  He says the long projects like this are put off, the more expensive they become--a projected cost growth of about 4 percent per year.

Brown says projects like Highway 31 are competing with similar projects around the state.  The Alabama Department of Transportation has an annual budget of $1.2 billion, however there are $9 billion in planned highway improvement projects around the state.

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