County awarded $1M for resurfacing

Published 7:03 pm Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Pike County will receive $1 million in funding to resurface four miles of road, ensuring adequate access to the new Rex Lumber saw mill.

Chairman Robin Sullivan said it is a relief to finally get this funding in so that the county can move forward with the resurfacing.

“It means that we can finally go ahead and complete our project for the Rex Lumber company,” Sullivan said. “It’s important because it will allow the truck traffic to come in from both ways now and sustain the weight and amount of trucks in and out every day.”

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The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) announced Tuesday the awarding of the $500,000 grant to the county. Along with $500,000 from the Alabama Department of Transportation, the project will make critical infrastructure improvements needed to support the growth of manufacturing businesses in the region, including Rex Lumber.

The project will help to resurface approximately four miles of County Road (CR) 7714 (old Highway 231) from CR7724 north to CR7707. This project was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by the South Central Alabama Development Commission. EDA funds the South Central Alabama Development Commission to help bring together the public and private sectors to create an economic development roadmap to strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment and create jobs.

County engineer Russell Oliver said this project benefits both the company and the county’s citizens.

“This will support the Rex Lumber traffic coming in from the north and also exiting to the north,” Oliver said. “It will absolutely also benefit the other citizens who use that road. Obviously, it’s a big deal to us. That is a very large sum of money for us and we’re thrilled and very thankful to have this help and to be able to support the growth of industry in Pike County.”

“Helping our communities implement their plans to provide the vital infrastructure that businesses need to be successful is a top priority for President Trump,” said Dr. John Fleming , U.S. assistant secretary of commerce for economic development. “This EDA investment will help build necessary road infrastructure needed to serve Pike County’s manufacturing industry and accommodate its future growth.”