‘Worst road in Alabama’ gets faceliftPublished 5:58pm Saturday, September 17, 2011
By CHRISTINE BOATWRIGHT / Staff Writer
VINCENT – The overhaul of Autumn Drive in Vincent has been a “long, long time coming,” Vincent Mayor Ray McAllister said at the road’s groundbreaking on Sept. 16.
Autumn Drive, which is located off Shelby County 467, is home to about 150 Vincent residents and runs the length of a mile.
“The waterlines look like they were put in by three drunk sailors,” McAllister said, indicating they don’t run in a straight line parallel with the road.
In 2008, McAllister and Town Councilman Larry King, who represents District 1, which contains the road, invited members of the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs for a ride down Autumn Drive.
“The woman from ADECA said it was the worst road in Alabama,” McAllister said.
Lisa Patterson and Trish Reynolds live on Autumn Drive and have been leading the charge in finding the means to repair the road. They began a non-profit organization, Vincent Citizens for Safety, in order to qualify for an ADECA grant. Now, two years later, their hard work has paid off.
The ADECA grant will pay $400,000 for new waterlines and road repairs. The town will match with an extra $115,000 to cover the construction costs. Robert Granger Inc. will begin work by Oct. 15, and will finish the project within 150 days, McAllister said.
“I still keep asking for people to pinch me because it’s been so long,” Reynolds said. “This community has come together very strong.”
State Representative Jim McClendon attended the groundbreaking ceremony to congratulate the town on obtaining the grant money.
“It was a highly competitive project. ADECA money is not normally spent on roads,” McClendon said. “This is the worst road in my district; I’ve never seen anything like it.
“People here would not give up. This is what America is made of,” he added. “I am ever so proud of y’all.”