I submitted an independent review of the Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) to the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) on July 10, 2019. As of this writing, ALDOT has not acknowledged receipt of my report, containing 19 specific issues with the project's decision document. The SDEIS is the most important document pertaining to the project. The bridge and bayway replacement cannot go forward without it.
The document is fatally flawed.
Since ALDOT has neither publicly nor even privately acknowledged that they are aware of these 19 specific problems with their decision document, I am sharing them with you, one at a time.
Comment 10: Allowing trucks to use the only tollfree route will increase risk to drivers unwilling or unable to pay tolls.
Basis: Risk is likely to increase by increasing traffic on the only tollfree route and exposing more noncommercial drivers to increased collision risk with large commercial, industrial and potentially hazardous materials transportation.
This has implications for ALDOT’s recent actions to close the Bankhead Tunnel on some weekends to allow for recreational use of the route. With traffic certain to increase on a tollfree route, the recreational use of Bankhead will almost certainly have to end.
Furthermore, this issue has environmental justice implications. Those with the least ability to pay are the populations that will have the greatest increase in risk.
Without resolution, this issue could halt finalization of the SDEIS.
Read the full report here.