FAIRHOPE, Ala. (WKRG) – It’s nothing official yet, but the Eastern Shore Metropolitan Planning Organization is ready to get the conversation started again about a long-term fix for the I-10 Bayway.
“You know there’s synergy going on right now. The conversations have been very productive so if we join together and write a letter to the governor I think that it’s going to be a very positive thing that we’re doing here,” said Eastern Shore MPO chairman Jack Burrell.
Wednesday morning members met at the Fairhope Satellite Courthouse chambers to discuss several items on their agenda, including the idea of writing a letter to Governor Kay Ivey to open lines of communication once again.
“We do make it clear that we have some caveats such as preserving the toll free routes and no PPP (public-private partnership) and some things such as that, but now’s not the time to start putting up those obstacles,” added Burrell.
Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson, who is chairman of the Mobile MPO, will work with Burrell on drafting a letter to Montgomery this week. Louis Campomenosi with the Common Sense Campaign agrees a solution is needed that doesn’t involve tolling.
“I am not vested in a bridge or an expressway. We are vested in something which is best for this region. It is a regional problem,” he said.
Burrell adds this letter is not for, or against, any plans or projects. He simply wants to start back from scratch with Governor Ivey in hopes of joining together on a plan in the future.
As for the separate project of widening I-10 between the Bayway and Malbis exit, that’s now included on the TIP, or transportation improvement program. Now, the design phase can begin. This stretch of interstate would be widened to help ease congestion in the area. The total cost would be a little under $18 million.