Pelham council OKs resolution related to I-65 widening project

PELHAM – The Pelham City Council approved an agreement with the Alabama Department of Transportation regarding the Interstate 65 widening between Alabaster and Pelham at a meeting on Monday, Aug. 21.

Council President Rick Hayes said the resolution is a standard agreement wherein the city of Pelham agrees to financially support ALDOT efforts on the project if any issues should arise within Pelham city limits.

“This just acknowledges that there may be some things the city needs to help with,” Hayes said.

Construction to widening I-65 to six lanes between Pelham and Alabaster is on the Alabama Department of Transportation’s 2018 fiscal year budget, according to ALDOT five-year-plan documents.

According to the plan, ALDOT has budgeted for the construction during the upcoming fiscal year, which will begin in October of this year. The plan calls for a total construction cost of about $52.8 million, of which $42.6 million will come from federal sources and $10.2 million will come from state and local sources.

In early May, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey directed ALDOT Director John Cooper to widen the about 3.5 mile portion of I-65 between the tank farm exit in Pelham and the Propst Promenade exit in Alabaster.

In addition to the added travel lanes, the project also will increase shoulder space along the northbound and southbound lanes “to easily allow more lanes to be added in the future,” according to Ivey. More than 93,000 vehicles travel the section of roadway each day, with more than 12,000 of those being tractor trailers, Ivey said.

According to Ivey, ALDOT will take bids on the plan before the end of the 2017 calendar year. The project likely will require two years to complete, at an estimated cost of between $50 million and $60 million. The chosen contractor will be notified by February 1, 2018, with construction to begin by the end of February 2018, she said.

In other business:

-Mayor Gary Waters read a proclamation designating September as Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month in the city of Pelham.

-The council approved an ordinance to transfer a surplus of easements and authorized the Waters to execute a quitclaim deed for said easement transfer to Two Mountains LLC in exchange for easements to be conveyed simultaneously to the city by Two Mountains LLC.

-The council approved an agreement with Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood for design engineering and construction supervision services related to the Bearden Road and Cedar Cove Subdivision drainage issues. The engineering firm will evaluate options to improve storm water drainage in the area and make recommendations to the council.

-The council approved change orders in the amount of about $42,500 related to the renovation of the Pelham Civic Complex and Ice Arena project.