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The Flor-Ala

The Student News Site of University of North Alabama

The Flor-Ala

The Student News Site of University of North Alabama

The Flor-Ala

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Department of Engineering renews Florence roads

Lilly Clark

Florence Department of Engineering is on a path to give the city’s roads a new life. The town’s worst being flipped into something locals can be proud of. 

The Florence City Council gives a budget to the Street pacing program each year to assess and repave roads in need. This year’s street list was sent out in the Feb 8 issue of Mayor Andy Betterton’s weekly newsletter and it consists of popular downtown streets like Tuscaloosa and Tombigbee. 

“[The list] doesn’t indicate any kind of order in the way they get paved,” said City Engineer Bill Batson. “We look at [roads] on a priority basis.” 

The inspectors on the committee evaluate the streets on a grading scale of one to ten, one being the best and ten being the worst. Batson said it doesn’t matter how long ago the road was paved, if it is in relatively good condition then it isn’t a priority. 

“We do it in an order so they don’t have to move the equipment too far,” said David Looney, an inspector on the committee. This showed in their pattern of the downtown roads being paved within days of each other. The downtown section of the list is almost complete, 

“We [almost have] all the downtown area done, the only thing we [have left] is going back to Waterloo Road and Cedar Street. After that, we will have the downtown area done,” said Looney.

Even with as much work as they currently have done on the project, it still barely makes a dent in the overall need.

“We know there’s over 360 miles of streets in the city because there have been new subdivisions that have come up,” said Batson. 

Currently, the committee faces constraints in renovating numerous essential roads due to an annual resource shortage. While they may intend to address a specific area in the upcoming year, the assessment might uncover a more pressing need that takes precedence over the initial plan.

“We really don’t have a lot of options… If we are lucky we can get 5 miles of paving done. As it stands we’ve got around 4 miles.” said Batson.

Since starting the project, the committee has completed a large portion of the list. At this speed, they could be done by the end of March.

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About the Contributors
Trenedy Parks, News Editor
Trenedy Parks is a sophomore from Fayetteville, Tenne. She is working towards a bachelor’s degree in journalism and digital media. She has worked as a staff writer for The Flor-Ala since Aug. 2022, and as News Editor since Aug. 2023. Her goals as a writer are to learn more about Florence and its community and to become more involved with the people of UNA.
Lilly Clark, Staff Photographer
Lilly Clark is a freshman from the town of Killen, Ala. She is majoring in interdisciplinary studies and hopes to pursue her dream job of video editing. She is a staff photographer.

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