TALLADEGA COUNTY, Ala. – The Coosa River Express has been a hot topic since the news broke in December.

By the spring of 2021, a Greenville-based company led by businessman Tim James expects to complete a new toll bridge – the Coosa River Express – connecting I-65 and Hwy. 280.

The Talladega County Commission will hold a public hearing on Monday, Jan. 13, for open discussion on the Coosa River Express.

Chairman of the Board of Commissioners Kelvin Cunningham told SylacaugaNews.com this will be an opportunity for the public to learn more about the project.

“That’s the reason we’re having this meeting Monday,” said Cunningham. “To have open discussion.”

Many are excited, but there are some with concerns. A petition has been started in opposition of the Coosa River Express.

The petition lists the following reasons to be in opposition of the toll bridge.

  • the threat the bridge would cause to the peace and quiet expected of the Lay Lake community
  • high traffic from 18 wheelers from industry providing materials to car manufacturing facilities and logging trucks would raise the chances of accidents that would be detrimental to the health of the lake and river
  • the traffic study holds many unanswered questions about what the toll will cost the community. A $2 toll one way turns into a $4 tax for a round trip over the proposed bridge!
  • the long-term impact on surrounding cities and towns such as Wilsonville and Columbiana
  • the construction process on the river and the impact to the critters in the area who rely on healthy water for their habitat
  • our state is notorious for allowing industry and developers to negatively impact our natural resources in the name of “economic development”— then not hold the entities accountable when they violate their permits.

Shelby Co. Engineer Randy Cole put out the statement seen below as more conversation surrounds the Coosa River Express.

The meeting will start at 5:30 Monday in the Talladega County Courthouse.

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