Wadley bridge

Attendees of an informational meeting Friday at Southern Union look over the project map of the proposed bridge replacement on Highway 22 in Wadley.

About 40 people attended an informational meeting last Thursday to find out more details about the proposed bridge replacement project on Highway 22 in Wadley.

The meeting was an open house featuring two large copies of maps depicting the scope of the project and what it would entail, and representatives from the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) were on hand to answer questions.

The project will actually be two bridges, one over the river and another over the train tracks that run alongside the river on the outskirts of downtown Wadley.

The current bridges were constructed in 1938 and have been deemed "structurally deficient and functionally obsolete" by ALDOT, according to the official description of the upcoming project.

The current bridges will remain intact and in use until the construction of the new bridges is complete.

The new bridges will sit parallel and just north of the current bridges (to the right of the current bridges if you are driving south into Wadley on Highway 22) and there will also be an update to the intersection of County Road 33 and Highway 22 as part of the project.

The new structure will be significantly wider than the existing one, increasing the width from approximately 24 feet to approximately 40 feet.

The path of the new right of way will necessitate the demolition of one structure, the home of the McGill family that sits on the river bank just north of the bridge.

The plans presented at Thursday's meeting are preliminary, but they will soon be finalized with hopes that construction will begin sometime in early 2023. The project will likely take 18-24 months from start to finish once construction begins.

A detailed project map can be viewed online at dot.state.al.us.

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