FLORENCE — Lauderdale County Commissioners are expected today to give the go-ahead to apply for funds to replace nine bridges.
The commission, during a recent work session, discussed the possibility of applying for bridge replacement money through the Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation Improvement Program’s final round of funding.
“There’s a lot of work that goes into this application process, so we need to give Ken an answer as quickly as possible,” Commission Chairman Dewey Mitchell said.
The commission meets today. Mitchell has asked commissioners to be prepared to give Allamel some direction.
County officials said all the bridges are substandard with low weight limits that prohibit school buses and emergency equipment from crossing them.
Allamel said the nine bridges are a part of the 26 low weight limit bridges remaining in the county.
“We need to go for them,” Commissioner Larry Irons said. “If we’re going to be able to keep replacing these old, low weight limit bridges, we’ve got to go (after) all the funding we can.”
Allamel said there are three rounds of ATRIP money. He said the county was awarded $500,000 for one project in the first round.
That project calls for work on the bridge over Anderson Creek on Lauderdale 70, east of Rogersville.
Allamel said the bridge is about 200 feet long.
“The pylons are steel and beginning to rust,” he said. “The work will include encasing them in concrete, which will make them stronger and last longer.”
He said the county applied for nearly $3 million in projects in the second round of ATRIP funding.
Allamel said that funding, if approved, would include nearly $2 million to replace four bridges and just more than $1 million for a resurfacing project.
The county must provide a 20 percent match in all ATRIP funds approvals.
“If we’re going to be able to continue to replace these bridges, we have to have some of these funds,” Irons said.
Tom Smith can be reached at 256-740-5757 or tom.smith@TimesDaily.com.