HOOVER, Ala. (WIAT)– Hoover is preparing for the future with three major projects. The city council recently approved $93 million for the city to borrow to take on each one.
Hoover intends to move forward with a new I-459 interchange, a performing arts center, and Hoover Met Stadium upgrades. The city said these are projects that have been in the works for many years.
City leaders say $61 million will go toward the new interchange, providing additional traffic outlets and connectivity to Highway 150.
Seventeen million dollars is intended for the performing arts center for Hoover to provide its residents with a space for the arts to be enjoyed and appreciated more.
Fifteen million dollars will go towards various Hoover Met Stadium upgrades, something the city said they hope will help them to maintain their relationship with the Southeastern Conference to continue hosting SEC baseball.
City leaders say quality of life is a top priority for their residents, and these are multigenerational capital projects ensuring the city is prepared for the future.
City Council President John Lyda said the city understands the need for continuous improvement of the assets they have, not only with fine arts, but also through refurbishing a 35-year-old stadium.
“Furthermore, with the interstate project we understand the need to not only create additional traffic outlets from Hoover High School and the Hoover Met Complex, but also connectivity to Highway 150, communities like Ross Bridge, Everly, and Lake Cyrus,” Lyda said.
Lyda also said traffic up and down Highway 150 that eventually makes its way down to I-459 needs quicker access, but some residents are raising concerns about what this could do to their property.
Hoover resident, James Robertson, said that he has lived in the area since the 1960’s. He, along with other citizens, question the city’s lack of concern for their neighborhood and homes that could be affected.
Robertson says one major concern revolves around their privacy being disturbed.
“We don’t want all that racket,” said Robertson. “They have a completed design, but they’re not offering, which would be normal, like a 100-foot undisturbed barrier.”
Mayor Frank Brocato said it’s likely less than 10 people will be affected, and those individuals will be taken care of properly.
“If it involves a home for instance, there are federal guidelines in place that really protect those property owners and we’re going to make sure –and the federal government is going to make sure– that we follow all of those procedures to make sure we have as little impact as we can on those families,” said Mayor Brocato.
City leaders say the Alabama Department of Transportation will take over the interchange project this summer.
Residents will then have the opportunity to hear plans and contribute to the end result during public hearings.