ALDOT stresses need to replace I-20/59 bridge in Birmingham

Source: WBRC video
Source: WBRC video

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - Wednesday, the state director of the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) talked about the need to replace interstate bridges in downtown Birmingham.

Interstate 20-59 in down town Birmingham is about 40 years old. It's estimated about 160,000 vehicles travel the stretch of roadway each day which makes it the busiest in the state of Alabama.

ALDOT Director John Cooper addressed the Joint Transportation Committee Wednesday about road projects in the area. Cooper said ALDOT looked at alternative routes such as Findley Avenue and Tallapoosa Street but schools, homes, historical sites, hazardous waste sites and population all made this unfeasible.

Cooper said the best plan is to replace the bridges starting no later than 2016.

"If you look 20 years out. If you look in the central business area of town it's going to be problematic. We struggle with it today. We are going to rebuild some bridges and add some capacity. And that will mitigate the problem some period of years," Cooper said.

Still Cooper said the ultimate answer will be the Northern Beltline to relieve some of the traffic.

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