After woman fatally struck on Hwy 280, city leaders reexamine pedestrian, driver safety
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. —
After a woman was hit and killed overnight on Highway 280, many began voicing concerns about pedestrian and driver safety.
Birmingham police officers tell ABC 33/40 the driver hit a woman attempting to cross the highway early Tuesday morning. The coroner identified the woman as 41-year-old Jackie Prestley.
City leaders tell ABC 33/40's Amber Grigley, foot traffic on this heavily-traveled highway is an issue that needs an immediate solution.
Since 2014, there have been seven fatalities along Highway 280 in the small stretch between between Best Buy and LongHorn Steakhouse.
"Every time that you have more than one fatalities on one specific road way in a relatively short manner of time, over the course of five years or less, it is concerning. Pedestrian traffic on Highway 280 is troubling, it's dangerous. Highway 280 is not designed for pedestrian traffic whatsoever," said Councilman Hunter Williams.
Williams says Highway 280 is controlled by ALDOT, meaning ALDOT will be in charge of working with the city to take charge of a pedestrian solution. At this time, city leaders are looking to bring a pedestrian bridge near Hollywood Boulevard.
"This would connect over Highway 280. It is something that will be discussed with the council and the mayor's legal team from the city of Birmingham and the prospective teams in Mountain Brook and Homewood," said Williams.
He says they have new LED lighting at every intersection along 280, extending through Red Mountain Expressway. But he stresses that the need for a pedestrian crosswalk near Cahaba Circle is urgent.
"In that area, it's going to take engineers looking at the different ways they can create a safe pedestrian crossing [to see] if it's even feasible," said Williams.
Grigley reached out to ALDOT multiple times. They responded in an email saying, "they are working with the city at this time to come up with a solution."