Why didn't the U.S. Department of Transportation award a grant to build the new Mobile River Bridge?
We might have some answers come Monday.
Also, will the denial will force toll prices to go up?
That can be answered now.
The Alabama Department of Transportation or ALDOT, was hoping to get $250 million dollars from a federal infrastructure grant to help pay for the two billion dollar Mobile River Bridge and Bayway project.
But when federal officials released the list earlier this week, the bridge project wasn't on it.
Allison Gregg with the Mobile River Bridge and Bayway project said, "Next week, we're doing a debrief as well and, so, we will learn more and that will help us when we apply for the grant again next year."
In a news conference earlier this week, Senator Doug Jones said, "We're not out yet. Just because we didn't get anything this year doesn't mean we won't try again next year."
ALDOT officials expect to conduct the de-briefing by phone Monday, with Congressman Bradley Byrne's office leading the way.
They also say just because the project didn't get federal funding right now, don't expect projected tolls to be increased.
Gregg said, "We're studying in the three to five dollar range for the tolls and, so, this should not impact that range."
In the meantime, they say the project is moving forward.
Pile driving work has been completed for test pilings along the Bayway and at two other locations and, now, ALDOT is working through the environmental review process.
Gregg said the study will help answer questions like, "How will traffic be impacted? What about lighting? What about the tree canopies? We take a look at all the factors that will be impacted by the project."
Still everyone involved in the project says getting federal money is important.
Mobile County Commissioner President Connie Hudson said, "We absolutely need that grant money to be a part of the funding equation for this bridge."
FOX10 News has also learned ALDOT plans to hold a forum July 11 to encourage various groups, like veterans, to get involved in the project.
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