Traffic signals will bring relief

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 8, 2004

Anyone who travels on U.S. Highway 280 understands we have a plenty of traffic on this notorious stretch of highway.

Growing retail centers and shiny new subdivisions all contribute to an ever-growing congestion problem.

Such a problem, in most eyes, is certainly favorable to the plight some Alabama counties are facing: unemployment, failing schools and the like certainly make me glad to call Shelby County home.

But that is not to suggest we should ignore the opportunities we face here, and traffic is certainly such an opportunity that will be with us for the foreseeable future.

One stretch of U.S. 280 that is a growing concern runs from the crest of Double Oak Mountain at Highland Lakes subdivision east to Chelsea.

Again, new subdivisions and growing retail centers add to an ever growing flow of traffic.

The completion of Mt. Laurel Elementary School will add even more passenger cars and school buses to the busy thoroughfare.

Growth in this part of the county is showing no signs of slowing so any traffic concerns we have today will only be magnified as more and more people decide to call this area home.

Considering all the possible options, the solution to this stretch of road centers on the installation of traffic signals.

So, after years of behind-the-scenes effort by our elected officials and local developers, state officials have recently given a tentative endorsement to the installation of three traffic signals.

These much-needed signals are planned for where U.S. 280 intersects Shelby County Highway 43, Highland Lakes Drive and County Highway 41.

The project still must receive final approval from the state and then, of course, we must find a way to pay for it.

Shelby County Commissioner Ted Crockett, who represents that area of the county, and Mike Hill, one of our state representatives in Montgomery, are to be thanked for their work in moving this project forward. Working through the minutiae of bureaucracy in Montgomery can many times be a thankless job.

It’s nice to know we have local representation that takes our situation seriously and has the talent and experience to get the job done.

Tim Prince is the publisher at the Shelby County Reporter. He can be reached at