Improvements at intersection of Alabama 70 and County Road 26 moving forward

Published 3:48 pm Monday, May 13, 2013

By AMY JONES / Associate Editor

COLUMBIANA — Shelby County will help pay for the preliminary engineering portion of a project intended to add turn lanes and intersection improvements, such as a signal light, at the intersection of County Road 26 and Alabama 70 in Columbiana.

During a meeting May 13, the Shelby County Commission agreed to be responsible for 33 percent of the preliminary engineering costs. Those costs are projected to be $100,000, which would mean the county would owe $33,000. The state will pay for the rest of the preliminary engineering costs.

The city of Columbiana will pay 33 percent of the costs for construction related to the project, with the state funding the rest.

County Engineer Randy Cole said the project is in its “initial stages,” and all parties are working on finalizing agreements before the project gets underway.

In other traffic and infrastructure actions, the County Commission:

— Approved plans to resurface and add a traffic stripe to County Road 49 from Alabama 25 north of Columbiana to County Road 47 just south of Chelsea.

Cole said bids will be let on that project in June, and repaving could begin in the fall. The estimated total cost for the project is $2 million, he said.

— Congratulated Cole for his recent award from the National Association of County Engineers. The organization named Cole its 2012 Urban County Engineer of the Year.

“You cannot even be considered for such an award unless you have high-quality folks you work with,” Cole said. “There’s no place like Shelby County.”

Cole also asked the commissioners to consider attending an Alabama Department of Transportation public involvement meeting concerning proposed improvements to the U.S. 31 interchange, which crosses Interstate 65 in Calera.

The meeting, which is open to the public, is set for June 6 from 4-7 p.m. at Calera First United Methodist Church.