Road project garners frustration among Lauderdale County businesses

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LAUDERDALE COUNTY, Ala. – Business owners are fed up. In northern Lauderdale county, a road widening project is closing in on three years.

Barrels and barriers line U.S. 43 north through Green Hill. They’ve been here since ground was broken in August of 2016. The state is widening 5-miles of two-lane highway into four. At the time, Governor Robert Bentley said the project would only take 18-months.

“It’s been going on for over two years,” said Melinda May, manager of the Green Hill Nursery. “Just get it done.”

May says they are in the peak season for plants and outdoor furnishings.  She was quite surprised to hear lanes would be shifting out front this week.

“Yeah we are, but like I said, we will just have to get out there and direct traffic,” May said jokingly.

The Alabama Department of Transportation says all southbound traffic will move to the newly constructed southbound side. Northbound drivers will stay on the old roadway for now. May is concerned customers will not be able to get to her.

“It is very important,” stated May. “It could really affect our business. Also, we want our customers to be safe and not feel scared to cross over the road to get here.”

ALDOT says the total project is about 75% complete. Which means it could be late summer or early fall before May’s headache is gone.

The Alabama Department of Transportation wants to warn drivers to be alert and expect delays during the lane shifting which could take place on Thursday. Drivers should also note County Road 47 on the east side of U.S. 43 will be closed, and drivers will need to detour to County Road 140.  County Road 47 on the west side of U.S. 43 will reopen at the same time.