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New lights to shine on 231

Staff Writer

A lighting project along U.S. 231 is one city leaders have been working on quite some time.

Drivers along the bypass in Troy have likely noticed poles being installed through the city.

Crews from the city of Troy utilities department and the South Alabama Electric Cooperative have been raising poles from which lights will be hanging in the near future.

Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford is excited to see the poles reaching into the blue skies .

"I’ve wanted to do this for many years," Lunsford said of what he hopes will be the first step of a beautification project on U.S. 231.

Although the city does not have the funding at this time, the mayor wants to continue working to secure funding that will make more improvements on the highway.

In the meantime, he is looking for the current project to be completed and the lights turned on for the first time.

"We hope it will move rapidly," Lunsford said of the project.

Plans, he said, are to have the project completed in a couple of months.

"It’s a big job," Lunsford said, adding the two utility departments and the Alabama Department of Transportation have all worked to add lighting along the heavily traveled highway.

It was the ADOT that came up with a $400,000 grant that provided the materials to light the way from the river bridge to south of Edge Regional Medical Center. Labor has been provided by city and Co-op employees.

But, the hard work is expected to be well worth it.

Troy Police Chief Anthony Everage said the lighting along a major thoroughfare is an asset to safety.

"Anytime you increase visibility, it makes the city safety," Everage said.

He said the additional lighting will also "probably deter some property crimes" at businesses on U.S. 231.