Frustrations build over Highway 231 closure

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MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. – Living along Highway 231 most of his life, Mark Kennemer said the area is dry and quiet.

“It’s like tumbleweeds coming through here now,” he explained.

Kennemer can’t remember the last time the busy highway was this silent.

Douglas Chaney, who lives in Lacey’s Spring said the stillness is satisfactory.

“We kind of enjoy the quiet,” said Chaney.

Highway 231 has been closed nearly two weeks after the Alabama Department of Transportation found a large crack in the road.

“That mountain’s coming back on them,” added Chaney. “It’s not done the way it should’ve been to start with.”

The closure is funneling most drivers to Highway 36.

“It’s kind of a hectic job trying to jump back and forth,” said Chaney.

Over the last week, contractors have been removing concrete and asphalt from the damaged portions of 231.

Concerned residents said the detours are filled with people pressed to make up for lost travel time.

“Right now, the way traffic is through there, it’s dangerous. Because there are people who fly through there,” explained Chaney. “Even with the cops being there, sometimes they just don’t care.”

This is the second time in a year that Highway 231 has needed repairs, and Kennemer said its important developers take a new approach.

“Let’s just go ahead and get it done right and take the time, make it happen. Then we don’t ever have to worry about this again,” he proposed.

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