Gulf Shores plans $19M link between Beach Express, Alabama 59

By GUY BUSBY
Government Editor
guy@gulfcoastmedia.com
Posted 6/15/22

GULF SHORES — A $19.63 million road project will improve access between Alabama 59 and the Baldwin Beach Express in Gulf Shores, city officials said.The Gulf Shores City Council was scheduled …

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Gulf Shores plans $19M link between Beach Express, Alabama 59

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GULF SHORES — A $19.63 million road project will improve access between Alabama 59 and the Baldwin Beach Express in Gulf Shores, city officials said.

The Gulf Shores City Council was scheduled to vote Monday, June 13, to approve an agreement with the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to begin the construction phase of the 2.8-mile project along the north shore of the Intracoastal Waterway.

The cost of the project will be paid by a grant though the federal Resources and Ecosystems Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast Act, known as RESTORE, Dan Bond, Gulf Shores environmental grants coordinator, said Monday, June 6.

"These corridors were identified for capacity improvements to reduce congestion and enhance access to and between the surrounding areas," Bond said at a City Council work session. "So, this project's been a long time coming and has been a part of a lot of planning efforts that we've done over the last several years."

Bond said Gulf Shores was originally awarded $14 million in RESTORE funding for the project. The city later requested another $5.6 million to pay for increased construction costs.

Bond said an amendment to the agreement on Canal Road, along the south bank of the Intracoastal Waterway in Gulf Shores, will be submitted in the future to pay for improvements on that road, also known as Alabama 180.

Mayor Robert Craft said the road construction is one of three RESTORE projects planned by the city.

"It's amazing. We're getting finally, as you see, the RESTORE grant, which was basically passed in 2014. We're just now working through the process to get access to the money and we've met every requirement of every timeframe," Craft said. "The project's moving slow, but we're finally there."

The Waterway East route will go from the intersection of Waterway West Boulevard and Alabama 59 east to East 1st Street. From East 1st, the route will follow East 27 Avenue which will be extended to the Baldwin Beach Express, according to city reports.

The RESTORE Act distributes money from civil and administrative penalties from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill to states affected by the incident.

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