A $1 million project aimed at improving safety will straighten West Morgan Road, a key route to West Morgan schools, and replace a bridge culvert.

The Decatur-area Metropolitan Planning Organization on Wednesday approved the project that will be funded with Morgan County and federal dollars.

The County Commission will pay the $205,800 match while the federal government will pay the remaining $823,200.

County Engineering Greg Bodley said a half-mile section of the road will be straightened and widened between Lamon Drive and Old Moulton Road.

“The bridge is in the middle of a sharp S-curve and a lot of traffic travels to the West Morgan schools, making it more dangerous,” District 1 County Commissioner Jeff Clark said.

Bodley said engineering design, which will be done by his office, and rights-of-way acquisitions are planned in fiscal 2020, which begins Oct. 1, with construction scheduled for fiscal 2021.

In other business:

• The MPO approved a $50,000 increase for plan review and permit inspection by the Alabama Department of Transportation on the Alabama 20 overpass project at Bibb-Garrett Road in Decatur-annexed Limestone County.

• The MPO approved a $3.4 million increase in funding to cover a revised estimate on the cost of the replacement of the southbound bridge on U.S. 31 over Cedar Creek, in Hartselle. The project is now expected to cost $5.9 million.

• Allen Teague, ALDOT preconstruction administrator, said the paving of North Seneca Drive in Trinity and Vaughn Bridge Road in Hartselle are scheduled for fiscal 2020.

• MPO officials advised the paving of Alabama 20 from the Lawrence County line to State Docks Road is continuing this week. Teague said all that’s left on the paving of Alabama 20 from State Docks Road to 12th Street Northwest is striping.

• Teague said the state plans to seek bids on refitting the lights at the Interstate 65 interchange with Alabama 36 in September.

• The contractor expects to be finished with the Greenbrier interchange at Interstate 565 in November, Teague reported.

bayne.hughes@decaturdaily.com or 256-340-2432. Twitter @DD_BayneHughes.

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