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Study: Northern Beltline will have huge economic impact on local cities

Northern Beltline rendering

New numbers out today show the Northern Beltline will have a huge impact on metro cities.

There's even the potential for job creation.

The Northern Beltline is the final segment of roadway to complete the interstate loop around Birmingham.

The loop starts in Bessemer wraps around going through Gardendale and ends up in in Argo.

"I feel like that will give great exposure for people and businesses," said Forestdale resident Lauren Geter said.

And Geter isn't wrong, according to the new study done by the Appalachian Regional Commission the beltline completion means big news for cities in the north-most part of the state.

The economic impact of businesses: $2.67 billion a year in output.

For the individual: 14,000 potential jobs, with a projected average income of $61,691 a year.

"That's wonderful, it's something that we have not had ever; if we did, it's been years and years ago, so I think it's time for change," said Geter.

Hunter Lancaster says the Gardendale is doing pretty well, but he expects the face of the city to change with the help of the interstate.

"I know it will bring traffic in, people passing through and everything, and just be easy for them to grow," said Lancaster.

There are some things that need to happen before the completion of the project, like funding.

Right now ALDOT representatives say funding is low on this project. However, representatives from the Birmingham Business Alliance say they are working to get the funds needed.

The Northern Beltline is funded 100 percent by the federal grants.

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