Gulf Shores approves signaled intersection on Foley Beach Express

By: Crystal Cole/ Islander Editor
Posted 10/16/17

The Gulf Shores City Council approved a resolution to begin improvements to the intersection of County Road 8 and the Foley Beach Express (FBE) at its last council meeting, including making the …

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Gulf Shores approves signaled intersection on Foley Beach Express

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The Gulf Shores City Council approved a resolution to begin improvements to the intersection of County Road 8 and the Foley Beach Express (FBE) at its last council meeting, including making the intersection signaled.

Mayor Robert Craft said this is something the city has been working on for quite a while to try and understand the dynamics of it.

“We have received a word from the county that they are in favor of allowing this to happen which is what was required there,” Craft said. “There is limited access on Foley Beach Express, but this will provide full access north and south onto County Road 8 with a signal there.”

The goal is to improve the capacity of County Road 8 from Hwy 59 through to the FBE. The city will enter into a funding agreement with ALDOT for preliminary engineering and to come up with a schematic design for an at-grade signalized intersection at County Road 8 and FBE.

Public Works Director Mark Acreman said the city has been looking at major transportation improvements and one of the first areas they wanted to focus on was the County Road 8 corridor.

“That’s become a major cut-through for tourists as well as a major growth area for single-family residential,” Acreman said. “We have the new Auburn campus being constructed and there’s a lot of growth there with our city’s education campus.”

Volkert Associates was preselected by the department of transportation as they are prequalified to perform roadway and infrastructure design of this nature.

Included in the proposed scope of work are:

- Widen County Road 8 East to four lanes with center median

- Add right-turn, left-turn and stacking lanes to the County Road 8/ Hwy 59 intersection

- Redesign the stormwater along County Road 8

- Add a traffic signal to the County Road 8/ Foley Beach Express Intersection

ALDOT will reimburse the city for the design costs related to the Foley Beach Express intersection improvements and the money for this project has been budgeted and accounted for in the 2017 and 2018 budgets. The work will include bike lanes, sidewalks and medians.

Craft said with the problems with congestion on Roscoe Road and the concentration of traffic on County Road 4, the city has been aiming to make County Road 8 the main thoroughfare into and out of Gulf Shores.

“That is a dramatic growth opportunity for the city moving forward, and we want to see it enhanced the best that we can and transportation and traffic will be a factor,” Craft said.

Also approved at the council meeting were:

-An exchange of services agreement with the Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism Board to cohost the NAIA Track and Field National Championships for 2018 and 2019.

-Annexing of more lots in the Martyn Woods subdivision. Planning Director Andy Bauer said 13 lots owned by four individuals remain to be annexed into the city in Phase II of the development.

- A reroofing project for the annex buildings in an amount not to exceed $325,000. There have been multiple roof leaks over the past several years in both the Executive Annex Building and the Building/P&Z Annex Building. The existing shingle roof has been patched multiple times and has passed its anticipated life cycle.