JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ala. (WIAT) — If Grants Mill Road is a part of your daily commute, then you probably know the headache most neighbors deal with on a daily basis.
Portions of the road are overcome with potholes, cracks, and old repair work that doesn’t quite make for a smooth ride.
Over the last few years, it’s gotten so bad, Birmingham District 2 City Councilor Hunter Williams said city engineers deemed it a ‘failing’ road.
Local cyclist, Sophia Lal, told CBS 42 it’s become dangerous to ride down Grants Mill, but the road is an important one in the Birmingham cycling community.
“As a local sports medicine physician, unfortunately I see these injuries, I hear about them, oftentimes, they’re my friends. I’m just trying to make the biking community in Birmingham safer,” she explained.
Grants Mill Road serves as a major connecting road for many of the routes cyclists take, and its a similar story for cars.
As traffic on Highway 280 grows more congested, many commuters use Grants Mill as a major thoroughfare.
Councilor Williams said the number of cars using Grants Mill grows by the month, further adding to the problem.
The solution seems easy. So why is it taking so long to repave the roadway? Well, it’s not that simple.
“Honestly at the end of the day it’s funding,” Councilor Williams explained. “We have a priority list; we have a lot of failing roads in the city of Birmingham and it’s a matter of priority.”
It’s also a complicated stretch of road, running through multiple communities, like the City of Birmingham and Irondale.
Councilor Williams said the failing conditions have been on his radar since he first got into office several years ago. While it’s taking a while, both he and the county are working together with the goal of getting the road repaved soon.
“Jefferson County and Commissioner Ammons office has offered to take on the responsibility for that, with the city signing an MOU and we will work together with Commissioner Ammons office to make sure that that happens. The city is reviewing the MOU at this time, once it is signed it will go out to bid and then the county will resurface the entire length of that,” said Williams.
While not legally binding, an MOU is an agreement that’s typically taken seriously, and paves the way toward a legal contract.
Commissioner Steve Ammons told CBS 42, if everything is approved, the goal is to begin construction by the end of summer.
The City of Birmingham recently released a full list of what roads will be repaved or repaired this upcoming year. It includes more than 200 projects.