Decatur Awarded ARC SAAW Grant for Bridge Study
The City of Decatur has recently been awarded a $1 Million Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) Southern Automotive and Aviation Workforce (SAAW) grant for a Decatur Bridge Feasibility Study.
The total coast of the study is $2 Million. The purpose of the Decatur Bridge Feasibility Study is to assess the need for a new river crossing to replace the U.S. 31 southbound bridge over the Tennessee River, in the City of Decatur, Alabama. The construction of a new bridge over the Tennessee River is considered extremely important to ensure that the necessary transportation infrastructure is in place to support the continued growth of the Automotive cluster as well as the Aviation cluster in North Alabama. A new bridge will be an investment in “Building Appalachia’s Infrastructure” and is a vital part of the Appalachian Development Highway System (ADHS) since it is part of Corridor V.
The Study will be data-driven to determine the need for construction of a new southbound Tennessee River bridge, which will meet the existing and future needs of the Automotive, as well as the Aviation employers of North Central Alabama and the City of Decatur, Alabama, along with their employees and suppliers. The Decatur Bridge Feasibility Study will include site identification and site assessment based on various physical and environmental factors such as location, highway and rail access, surrounding land uses, and the estimated cost of development amongst others. Once the most feasible site or sites is identified, a detailed cost estimate, estimated economic impact (cost-benefit analysis), and potential funding sources, stakeholders, and partners will be identified to aid in moving the construction of a new bridge forward. The City will be issuing a RFQ soon to select a consultant to prepare the study, and the estimated time for project completion is approximately one-year.