Changes could be on the way to Redstone Arsenal Gate 9

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REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. (WHNT)– Changes to Redstone Arsenal Gate 9 could be on the way.

There’s a plan to move the gate back nearly 3/4 of a mile once funding is secured.

Colonel Bill Marks, Garrison Commander, explains the problem: “We are approaching max capacity that this current structure can support.”

So there’s a new plan proposing to move Gate 9 about 4000 feet back to create more space for cars to wait in line.

It wouldn’t add additional lanes, but its new design would be flexible enough to handle change if there’s a need.

“We plan to make it to where it can easily be expanded if the workforce grows,” said Jim Ellis, Architect and Planner.

This wouldn’t increase speed through the gate, Colonel Marks said. Instead, it’s all about safety.

“We will occasionally see cars standing alongside of 565 where you have traffic that’s passing them at 70 miles an hour,” said Colonel Marks, remarking that any sudden moves in that kind of traffic can create “an obvious catastrophic situation we are trying to avoid.”

Nearly half of the Arsenal’s civilian workforce uses Gate 9, and during construction it would be important for it to remain open.

“We will have a whole planning effort to make sure we can relocate the gate in such a way that we will have a minimal impact on the traffic flow through the gate,” said Ellis.

A team of arsenal and community leaders is exploring funding options. We spoke to Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong about the issue.

“It’s going to cost some money, but the big thing is we are going to look together to find a solution,” he said.

The plan isn’t ready to go just yet, but once construction begins Ellis estimates it would take about 18 months to complete.

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