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Federal grant to help build a pedestrian bridge in Point Clear

Scenic Hwy 98 Point Clear pedestrian bridge preliminary site plan
Feb 19

A federal Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) grant for $910,000 will help build a free-standing pedestrian bridge along the Eastern Shore Trail near the Grant Hotel in Point Clear.  

The TAP Grant was accepted by the Baldwin County Commission in December of 2023, which started the initiation of the design phase. The TAP Grant program is available to cities, towns, county commissions, metropolitan planning organizations, and agencies where elected officials communicate directly with the public through public meetings and a variety of public outreach opportunities.

Project slated for completion in 2025

The project, which is slated to be completed in 2025, was awarded to the County Commission by the Alabama Department of Transportation. This grant will fund 80% of the pedestrian bridge. 

The goal is for the new bridge to fit in with the current infrastructure by reducing the dependence on automobiles and providing alternative modes of transportation such as biking or walking.

The project will allow for a safe and efficient pedestrian crossing over Point Clear Creek. It will be located on the east side of the current vehicular bridge located on Scenic US-98 between the Grand Hotel and its marina and will not be adjacent to traffic. 

The walkable bridge maintains the current widths of the Eastern Shore Trail system and will be 100% ADA-compliant. Given the historic nature of the Grand Hotel, county officials say details about the overall appearance of the bridge will be part of the design.

The bridge will add to the safety of pedestrians who currently use the sidewalks on the east side of Scenic US-98 and must merge with traffic to cross the vehicular bridge. 

This bridge will complete a missing link in the 22-mile-long Eastern Shore Trail that stretches from Spanish Fort to the Weeks Bay Reserve at Fish River. 

Comprised of sidewalks, asphalt paths, elevated boardwalks, and low bridges, the Eastern Shore Trail is a popular route for runners, pedestrians, and casual cyclists.