ORANGE BEACH, Ala. (WALA) - It's a reality you learn to live with if you live in the beach communities of Baldwin County: the summer beach season is fun, but the traffic it brings isn't.
However, officials in Orange Beach said in the last three years, tourism growth has made an already complicated situation nearly unbearable.
The Fourth of July Weekend traffic was often bumper to bumper across the city. Afterward, Orange Beach Mayor Tony Kennon posted a sign near city hall calling on help from the state to fix the problem.
Allen McElroy, chairman of the Orange Beach Industrial Board, said the city gives approximately $60 million in tax revenue to the state of Alabama every year.
"It has been at a standstill and that's the problem. We cannot expect people to keep coming back year after year if they cannot move around," said McElroy.
McElroy said he expects that income could even take a hit if something isn't done.
"My parents were here back in the 1950s. We loved to see cars down here after labor day in the summertime. We were looking for the business and we've got it. But we cannot keep it if we don't do something about it. The tourists will go to Destin or somewhere else," McElroy said.
Kennon said officials in Montgomery have had three options to relieve traffic for years.
Those options include widening Canal Road and building a bridge over Wolf Bay. Kennon said they've already raised money for both measures.
"We put up $2.6 million to the state six years ago to expand Canal Road. If you had given me $2.6 million six years ago and I did nothing with it, you'd be ready to blow a gasket. That's where we are," said Kennon.
City officials and residents said any one of the options on the table currently would make an immediate difference with this problem. They said building a bridge over Wolf Bay is the unanimous option for many folks and the city of Orange Beach has already funded nearly 70 percent of the cost.
"What is the hold up? This isn't just an Orange Beach, Gulf Shores problem. It's a state of Alabama problem because we represent the state of Alabama through our beaches. They need to get engaged with us and help us fix this problem," Kennon said.
The governor's office for the state of Alabama issued the following statement:
"The Governor understands the transportation issues in Baldwin County and has been working to address them. These traffic issues prove how much people love the Alabama Gulf Coast and return year after year. The Governor will continue to address the transportation needs of Baldwin County as more and more people choose to vacation at the coast."
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