Big excavation project underway for Hwy 231, ALDOT revealing reconstruction plans this week

News

MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. – The Alabama Department of Transportation has a multi-million dollar emergency project underway to repair highway 231 on Brindlee Mountain in Lacey’s Spring.

A section of the highway has been closed for several weeks now. Finally, we expect to learn solid details about reconstruction this week.

There is a plan

ALDOT has a plan to reconstruct a highly traveled roadway.

“It would almost certainly be many millions of dollars,” said ALDOT spokesperson Seth Burkett.

The Alabama Department of Transportation will host a public information meeting Thursday, March 12 to provide specifics on what will be done to fix the road and hopefully a timeline on the repair work.

Meet here on Thursday, March 12

Arab High School Auditorium – 770 6th Street NE, Arab, AL 35016. The meeting will include a formal presentation beginning at 6:30 p.m. ALDOT representatives will be available to answer questions and receive input following the presentation.

Persons with disabilities who may require special accommodations or assistance are asked to contact Seth Burkett with ALDOT North Region at 256-505-4964.

The work won’t be cheap

Less than a month ago, A 1,000 foot stretch of Highway 231 was covered in pavement. A landslide was triggered by heavy rainfall, but experts say the cracks in the road were merely evidence of what’s been happening underground.

“What they’re doing now is excavating further down to remove some of the burden off of this landslide,” said Burkett.

Burkett said crews need to excavate 100-thousand cubic yards of rock and soil. That’s enough to fill about 30 Olympic swimming pools.

Then and now

“What brought it to our attention that we had a major landslide going on was the activity that first occurred back in February of last year,” said Burkett.

When the road cracked for the first time in 2019, crews made temporary repairs to keep the lanes open. But then officials found out there’s solid rock that’s moving 50 feet below earth’s surface. That caused the roads to severely deteriorate last month.

When asked how long ago the cracks started, Burkett couldn’t say for sure.

“That’s a good question because there’s been ongoing slide activity in this area for many, many years, possibly before the road even existed.”

Experts say the landslide was larger than what they typically see in Alabama

The excavation alone would take at least two months to complete.

“It was no longer a situation where we could monitor it and try to work on a plan to correct it,” said Burkett.

The full plan is still not revealed, but WHNT News 19 was able to go beyond the barricades with ALDOT crews to see the plan the unfold.

The Alabama Department of Transportation will host a public information meeting Thursday, March 12 to provide specifics on what will be done to fix the road and hopefully a timeline on the repair work.

Trending Stories

Latest News

More News