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Orrville among cities to benefit from road funding

On Thursday, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey and the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) announced that $7 million in funding had been handed down to cities and counties across the state for road and bridge work.

“An investment in our roads and bridges is an investment in the future of Alabama,” Ivey said. “These $7 million in funds will go a long way in helping communities across the state address various road and bridge projects. I am proud to see the continuing positive ramifications from the Rebuild Alabama Act. Soon, every Alabama citizen will feel the benefits from this additional investment in our infrastructure.”

In total, 31 projects were selected for funding across the state – the only city in Dallas County to receive such funding was Orrville, which received $186,700.

Paired with the $40,000 of local funds the city reserved, Orville now has a combined $226,700 to resurface Academy, Mill and Church streets.

“These funds will mean a lot to the City of Orrville,” said Orrville Mayor Louvenia Lumpkin. “I don’t know the last time those streets were redone.”

According to Lumpkin, she and the council had decided to take action to beautify the city and landed on streets as the obvious starting point.

Lumpkin stated that the city began working with Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood, an architectural firm based in Montgomery, to draft a plan of attack.

“Everybody wants their roads fixed,” Lumpkin said. “For us to be able to do it is just exciting. I’m excited that we get to do something with our streets that we’ve never done before.”

According to Lumpkin, it was her husband, William Lumpkin, a member of the Orrville City Council and a candidate for Dallas County Commission, who led the charge in applying for the funds.

According to William Lumpkin, the condition of the city’s streets had become a point of contention for citizens.

“With the street looking like they’re looking now, people complained that they were messing up their front ends, so we started looking at what was available,” William Lumpkin said. “We had to do something.”

William Lumpkin began corresponding with a Mobile-based grant writer to draft the application for the funds and secure the local matching funds.

In the end, the council agreed on the three streets named due to their current condition – all three were riddled with “large” potholes.

For his part, William Lumpkin said the funding will have a “major impact” in Orrville, though he hopes that the city can secure funding in the future to repair many more streets in the city.

A second award cycle is slated for later this year, when the remaining $3 million in funding will be handed down.

Cities and counties will be notified of the coming awards by either the League of Municipalities or the County Commission Association.

It is expected that all projects will be under contract by the end of the calendar year.