Coastal Gateway Blvd. project scheduled for Sept. 30 completion
Gulf Shores Public Works Director Mark Acreman told City Council the Coastal Gateway Boulevard project, budgeted for $4.8 million in 2020, is scheduled to be completed Sept. 30. Major improvements include widening the road to four lanes with landscaped center medians, added additional lanes to the State Route 59 intersection, and a closed drainage system and sidewalks to allow for bike lanes.
A traffic signal at the Beach Express intersection has been functioning since May 11. The the left turn signal at the the Foley Beach Express intersection was confusing to some drivers. “We addressed those concerns that came in through (the council) and the emails you received,’’ Acreman said.
“Last Thursday we actually shifted all of the traffic to the two recently paved southern lanes of Coastal Gateway,’’ Acreman told G.S. City Council on June 8. “We’ll start the rebuilding and construction of the two northern lanes which will ultimately become the westbound lane. In addition to that, we’ve also completed most of the sidewalk on that southern side and we will be completing that sidewalk as we go through.’’
Acreman said the two lanes that are open now from Hwy. 59 to The Foley Beach Express have been completely rebuilt.
“This is not an overlay of the old road. This is a complete rebuilding of what used to be County Road 8,’’ he said. “It was in such substandard continue it could not come anywhere close to handling the volume of traffic that we were seeing on that roadway.’’
Acreman said traffic delays getting out of neighborhoods on the north side of Coastal Gateway Blvd. was, unfortunately, unavoidable during roadwork. Gateway Blvd.’s two southern lanes did not receive the final wearing surface of asphalt and that will result in occasional standing water.
“That will all go away when we do the final wearing portion. That will be at the end of the project,’’ he said. “The reason we’re doing that is as we’re still building out the north side there’s bound to be construction traffic on that roadway. We don’t want to go and put on construction activities over brand new paved road because the asphalt is going to be fairly soft for a couple of months. We’re going to wait until all of the construction work’s done and we’ll do the final paving and final striping job on that whole roadway.’’