Lights go up along I-65 Exit 219

Published 11:05 pm Friday, October 30, 2009

Jemison city leaders are hoping to shed some light on a major economic opportunity — literally.

Lights are being installed along I-65 Exit 219. The city was awarded $1 million in federal funding for the project.

Jemison Mayor Eddie Reed said businesses are already showing interest in locating to the interchange.

“We are glad to see it done,” Reed said. “Since the lighting has gone up, we have already had one business to commit, and a second business will possibly locate there.”

Even though Reed said he could not comment on the specific businesses, he said lighting is a major incentive for companies looking to relocate or expand.

Construction on the project began June 24 and has about 50 days remaining.

Keith Hoggle, assistant construction engineer with the Alabama Department of Transportation’s Fifth Division, said the lights should be working soon.

“In approximately 40 days we expect some if not all of the lights to be tested,” Hoggle said.

The project ended up costing $899,857 and was awarded to Stone Electric Company, Inc. in Birmingham.

Reed said the money awarded to the city could only be used for the lighting. He thanked Congressman Spencer Bachus for his efforts in securing the funding.

“Our exit was the only exit between Birmingham and Montgomery without lighting,” Reed added.

The city is also extending a sewer line out County Road 42 East for future businesses in the area.