Northern Beltline "Phase One" gets underway in Pinson
"We just kicked off work on the Birmingham Northern Beltline," ALDOT Construction Engineer, Mike Mahaffey, said. "We've got to move quite a bit of dirt, build some culverts, protect the environment and move a mountain or two."
Mahaffey says ALDOT is ready to move those mountains.
Phase One of the future I-422 is, right now, underway in Pinson. It's a 1.34 mile stretch that will be connecting Routes 75 and 79.
"We just want to get out here and build a good road," Mahaffey said.
Phase One costs $46 million that was paid for with federal money.
"I think it's going to be a good thing," David Hall said.
Hall lives in the area and is happy to finally see progress after it being talked about for so many years.
The good news is that Phase One should be finished by the Fall of 2016, but the bad news is that the entire 52 mile stretch could take up to 30 years to complete. The interstate will go from the Pinson area to the Bessemer area.
"I'm 62 [years-old]," Hall said. "By the time they finish it, I'll be gone...long gone."
Mahaffey says he knows the project has and continues to meet opposition with one of the biggest concerns being the environment. In Phase One, Mahaffey says everything possible is being done to protect the nearby Self Creek.
"It does make it more interesting," he said. "It's a challenge to do what we got to do, but we think we're ready to do that. We think we got a good design and the contractor is very excited about doing this work."