COWARTS, Ala. (WDHN) — The city of Cowarts, Alabama has been having problems with traffic for years.
Starting about 8 years ago, the city started making changes to decrease the number of traffic accidents in the city, but none prevailed.
“We have tried red lights and it didn’t work,” Mayor of Cowarts, Randy Roland said. “We tried closing some of the intersections and just going one way and that didn’t work. And now they are thinking about closing some more intersections and putting them in a different area.”
Now, the Alabama Department of Transportation is stepping in to help correct the traffic issues in the city.
According to Mayor Roland, more than 20,000 cars come through the city daily on Highway 84 and the average speed in some areas is upwards of 80 miles per hour.
This is causing many traffic accidents, and even a fatality in the city, according to Mayor Roland.
However, some people in Cowarts think closing roads isn’t the best course of action for other reasons.
“They have changed the traffic direction a few years back and that took about 25% of my traffic. Now they take another 25 percent, that’s 50%,” Owner of Portable Buildings And Awnings in Cowarts, Tony Taylor said. “My customers complain about the intersection. My drivers that deliver my buildings, it is dangerous pulling those big trailers with buildings on them.”
But one long-time resident of Cowarts says this change is a welcome one.
“I’ve got friends and people I have know all my life that have gotten killed in these bad intersections,” a concerned citizen Tim Jordan said. “This is not a change for the sake of change. I hope the attitude in there will be for the sake of improvements.”
The meeting tonight was just to present this information to the public to get feedback.
There is no set date for when, or if, any of these changes will take place, but WDHN will keep you posted as this story develops.