News & Updates

September 16, 2020

U.S. 231 bridges nearing completion

HUNTSVILLE — Bridge construction for the Alabama Department of Transportation’s emergency landslide repair on U.S. 231 in Morgan County is nearing completion, and full reopening of the highway is anticipated within the next few weeks.
ALDOT’s contractor has finished pouring concrete for the decks, or surfaces, of both bridges. Additional concrete pours will be necessary to complete the bridge rails. Last week, contractor Brasfield & Gorrie also began constructing the asphalt approaches to the bridges, tying the structures into the existing roadway.
Weather permitting, work on the $14.6 million project will continue around the clock, seven days a week, to reopen U.S. 231 as soon as possible. The deadline for reopening the highway is Dec. 2, but incentives up to nearly $2.5 million for early completion motivated Brasfield & Gorrie to accelerate the timeline. Because some additional work items are exempt from the deadline, motorists are advised that the area will remain a work zone with daily temporary lane closures.
The twin bridges constructed on massive drilled shafts socketed in solid rock beneath the landslide will safely span the unstable area on Brindlee Mountain between Lacey’s Spring and Morgan City. Each bridge is about 1,000 feet long and 44 feet wide, accommodating two 12-foot lanes with 10-foot shoulders.
The closure of U.S. 231 followed severe damage caused by a substantial landslide triggered by heavy rainfall in February. Further investigation revealed a slide plane roughly 50 feet underground affecting about 1,000 feet of the bifurcated highway in each direction. During the first phase of repair, Reed Contracting removed about 220,000 cubic yards of dirt and debris from the slide area. Work on the second phase of the repair, bridge construction, began June 1.

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