Veterans Memorial Parkway Opens

Originally published in the Anniston Star on December, 21st 2015. Click here for the full story.

The drive between northern Anniston and Oxford became quicker this morning.

Alabama Department of Transportation officials partially opened the long-awaited Veterans Memorial Parkway in Anniston around 9 a.m.

Crews in hard hats and neon-green jackets stood along the off ramps and on ramps from McClellan Boulevard just after 8 a.m., waving motorists away from the parkway. By 9 a.m., crews had activated new traffic lights on McClellan Boulevard and walked away from the nearby ramps.

Minutes later, motorists eased up the ramp and headed toward McClellan and Oxford. Other vehicles could be seen on the parkway, coming from the opposite direction.

Work has been underway for more than a year to finish the last $12.2 million, 3.7-mile phase of the parkway. The total 7-mile road project has been in the works for more than a decade and has cost $150 million.

The parkway’s southern end is in Oxford at Interstate 20. It travels north through McClellan, connecting with McClellan Boulevard in northern Anniston at U.S. 431.

Motorists can use the parkway, but it is still incomplete because more paving and other work is needed.

Only two of the four lanes that connect the parkway to U.S. 431 are open. All four lanes of the parkway on the other side of the bridge over McClellan Boulevard are open.

–Story Credit: Patrick McCreless