Hayneville – Lowndesboro Intersection Proposal Not Good; Better Needed

Published 11:32 am Thursday, May 5, 2022

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(An Editorial Opinion of The Lowndes Signal Staff)

What is proposed by ALDOT for the Hayneville – Lowndesboro intersection will create more problems than it solves, in our opinion. It is not comparable to the Centreville solution already implemented and favored by people there according to their mayor who attended with the ALDOT group at their meeting in Lowndesboro.

People who live in Lowndes County and make constant use of that intersection and those with businesses there need to be heard and their opinions injected into the eventual decision. That is why ALDOT labels what they think is best as a ‘proposed’ plan.

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But the Lowndesboro meeting sounded more like a done deal than a proposed solution. That is likely because the person who appeared to be senior to others from ALDOT left that impression on more than a few of those in attendance. We add this as an opinion rather than a fact.

Through the Signal’s news stories we are digging into the matter, seeking what elected officials think, likewise also the users of the intersection and those who live and work here. Most responses do not think what is proposed is best. But our second story on the matter is today and more will follow in the weeks ahead.

We are willing to publish the pros and cons of the facts and the responsible opinions of people who live here, represent the people here, do business here, have a tie to this area or pass through. All such goes through a process that subjects it to editing for clarity or good taste.

Here are our thoughts on the intersection.

We feel something different from that proposed by ALDOT is badly needed. Our intersection is poorly lit with one dim yellow blinking caution light at the median and cross road, the roadway is not adequately marked or markings maintained. A hill that brings eastbound cars and trucks over it at 65 MPH, and some at even greater speeds, is the chief problem and danger.

It is difficult to reduce speed after topping the hill — the grade to the intersection is short. What is needed, we suggest be considered, are two to four bright blinking caution lights at the intersection and a blinking caution light for cars going east before they top the hill – this would be a good area to examine a lower speed limit on the western side of the hilltop and through the intersection. Usual signage is needed as to what is ahead.

Another later need might be a traffic light.

What is proposed by ALDOT could create a number of accidents due to confusion and speeding vehicles among through traffic. It does not look to be the right answer for heavy agricultural traffic, which we think differs from the Centreville solution, and those moving hay to cattle. And it appears it would be very troublesome to the businesses on the south side of the eastbound lane.

Our hope is for more time, conversation by ALDOT between elected officials in Lowndes County, and with people who live and work here. They deserve no less, and ALDOT owes us that opportunity.