Changes coming to HWY 280's traffic signals

A simple task of turning the key and pulling out the driveway can turn into a waiting game for Sharon Albritton.

"We depend on lights to turn red to get out of this subdivision," said Albritton. Albritton and her family live off of Highway 280. There's only one way in and one way out of her neighborhood.

Getting in is the easy part it's the latter causing some white knuckle moments.

"I've had to close my eyes when I've been in the passenger seat, it's kind of scary," said Sharon's daughter, Bynum. Now, it could take even longer for residents along 280 to get out of their neighborhoods.

The Alabama Department of Transportation will soon adjust traffic lights from Red Mountain Expressway to Highland Lakes. That change will create adaptive lights for all traffic in between. Meaning when one light turns green, they all do.

Kaci Chesebra says the is the last thing she wants to see,"it will be harder to get out because it's hard now when the lights are red."

Brian Davis with ALDOT says handling 280's congestion is a balancing game. Highway 280's chaos may never be a gem to drive in but it can be controlled.

Coordinating signals, Davis says would ease the flow of traffic. And to make that happen, residents along side streets may have to wait a little longer at the stop sign.

That idea doesn't sit too well with people like Albritton. "Either there are going to be a lot of wrecks coming out of our neighborhood because we have several teens in here that drive or we'll be sitting here for an hour just to get out of our neighborhood," said Albritton.

The adaptive lights are set to start mid-year.

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