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Major upgrades mean safer, more efficient travel on I-59 in Trussville

map overview of I-59 widening in Trussville
Map overview of I-59 widening in Trussville
Jun 05

The Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) is launching a significant infrastructure project aimed at revitalizing and expanding a critical segment of I-59 in Jefferson County from the I-459 interchange in Birmingham to Chalkville Mountain Road in Trussville, Alabama.  This extensive project begins west of I-459 near Edwards Lake Road and ends north of CR-10, with an overall distance of approximately four miles.

The primary goal of the I-59 Trussville project is to address the deteriorating condition of the roadway while simultaneously increasing its capacity to accommodate modern traffic demands. With the roadway originally constructed and opened to traffic in the mid-1970s, the aging infrastructure has reached a point where a comprehensive overhaul is necessary. The existing concrete substructure, overlaid with asphalt multiple times over the past five decades, is now beyond repair. As a result, a total reconstruction is the most viable solution.

Key Components of the Project

Roadway Reconstruction

The main feature of the project involves the complete removal and replacement of the existing roadway pavement. This includes both the northbound and southbound lanes, which will be reconstructed and expanded to incorporate an additional lane in each direction. The new configuration will transform the current four-lane roadway into a six-lane thoroughfare, with each lane measuring 12 feet in width and complemented by 12-foot shoulders. Notably, this expansion will occur within the existing median, ensuring that no additional right-of-way is required.

Interchange Ramps and Slab Repair

The project will also address the interchange ramps at Chalkville Mountain Road, enhancing traffic flow and safety. Additionally, slab repairs will be conducted on I-459 from the I-59 interchange to Exit 32 (US-11), further improving the structural integrity and longevity of the roadway.

Bridge Deck Replacements

Critical to the project are the bridge deck replacements on I-59 over Edwards Lake Road. Both the northbound and southbound bridge decks will be replaced to ensure the continued safe passage of vehicles. Intermittent lane closures on Edwards Lake Road will be necessary to facilitate this work.

Drainage, Lighting, and Signage

Comprehensive improvements will also be made to the drainage systems, roadway striping, lighting, and signage. These enhancements are designed to improve safety, visibility, and overall driving conditions.

Given the scale of the project, traffic management will be a crucial component to minimize disruption and maintain safety. ALDOT plans to implement staged construction, ensuring that at least one lane of traffic in each direction will remain open throughout the project duration. Nighttime lane closures will be strategically scheduled during off-peak hours to reduce the impact on daily commuters.

map overview of I-59 widening in Trussville
Map overview of the beginning point of the I-59 widening in Trussville

Project Benefit

The I-59 Trussville project promises numerous benefits for the local community and the broader region which include:

Enhanced Safety

Replacing the deteriorated roadway and bridge decks will significantly reduce the risk of accidents and improve overall safety for motorists.

Increased Capacity

Adding an extra lane in each direction will help alleviate congestion, accommodating the growing traffic volume and improving travel times.

Improved Infrastructure

Modernized drainage, lighting, and signage will enhance the durability and functionality of the interstate.

Economic Growth

Improved infrastructure is vital for economic growth, facilitating smoother transportation of goods and services and attracting businesses to the area.

The I-59 Trussville project represents a major investment in the future of Alabama’s transportation infrastructure. By addressing the immediate needs of the aging roadway and planning for future capacity, ALDOT is ensuring that I-59 will remain a vital and efficient artery for both local and regional traffic. While the project will necessitate some temporary inconveniences, the long-term benefits of a safer, more efficient roadway will far outweigh the short-term disruptions.

UPDATED: 6/6/2024 to include images