ATRIP making impact on county

Published 8:26 am Thursday, October 10, 2013

The largest road and bridge improvement program in Alabama’s history is making a visible impact on Butler County.

Fifteen road and bridge projects throughout the county are being funded by the Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program, which takes future federal dollars to pay for road and bridge projects that are needed immediately.

“ATRIP is making a material change for the better for most citizens in the state,” said Frank Hickman, chairman of the Butler County Commission. “… This program has moved us far ahead in the repairs, resurfacing and maintenance of our road system.”

Email newsletter signup

The state awarded more than $10.3 million for projects in Butler County, which according to Hickman totals nearly two decades worth of federal funding. The money will be used to resurface 92 miles of roads throughout the county.

Among the projects being funded through the program is the resurfacing of Glendale Aveneue, which passes in front of Ozark Materials, which announced in May that it will open a plant in the former WestPoint Home facility in Greenville.

“The maintenance of our roads is important because of jobs and our economy,” Hickman said. “When industries look at coming to Butler County the condition of our roads is terribly important.”

County Road 50 was also resurfaced from Alabama Hwy. 10 to the Crenshaw County line as part of ATRIP.

County Engineer Dennis McCall said that project, which should be completed this week, will be a boost to the area’s automobile industry.

“The Tier I suppliers use that road to transport materials back and forth from Greenville to Luverne, and they will certainly benefit from its resurfacing,” he said.

Late last month, Butler County completed its first ATRIP project – the replacement of a bridge on County Road 53 that spans a tributary of Patsaliga Creek.

“This project replaced a weight-restricted bridge with a new structure,” McCall said. “This new bridge will ensure that private landowners have a safe and dependable roadway system for the transport of timber for many years to come.”

The project increased the length of the bridge, which will service more than 18,000 acres of timberland in Butler and Covington Counties, from 76 feet to 102 feet.
Statewide nearly $1 billion is being spent on more than 1,000 projects, which officials estimate will generate more than 15,000 jobs.

“ATRIP is making a difference in every county across Alabama by allowing much-needed road and bridge improvement projects to move forward,” Gov. Robert Bentley said. “We’re improving public safety, and we’re also helping attract more jobs. When companies look for places to build and expand and hire more people, they look for places that have good roads and bridges.”