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Reed announces update on Wallace Ferry/Blackburn Road improvement

In recent years, the access road to the Shoal Creek Mine has deteriorated to the point that it is no longer passable and safe for employees.

Senate President Pro Tem Greg Reed
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Senator Greg Reed, R-Jasper, on Tuesday, announced road improvement updates to Wallace Ferry/Blackburn Road leading to the Peabody Energy Shoal Creek Mine operation.

In recent years, the access road to the Shoal Creek Mine has deteriorated to the point that it is no longer passable and safe for employees entering and leaving the mine portal. Through the Industrial Road Access and Bridge Corporation grant fund, nearly $1.8 million will be awarded to the Tuscaloosa County Commission from the Alabama Department of Transportation.  This funding will allow for nearly seven miles of road resurfacing and striping to provide safe and adequate passage to the Shoal Creek. Mine. 

The Shoal Creek Mine located in Walker and Tuscaloosa Counties produces high-quality met coal that is exported to steelmakers worldwide. Alabama’s coal industry has a $2 billion annual economic impact on our state, and the Shoal Creek Mine employs nearly 350 men and women who earn an average salary over $100,000. 

“Coal mining has been the backbone of West Alabama for a hundred years.  This operation is vital to not only West Alabama but the entire nation as 60 percent of exports through the Port of Mobile is coal from right here in Alabama,” stated Senator Greg Reed. “I am proud to have worked alongside the Alabama Mining Association and Alabama Department of Transportation to secure funding for the much-needed repairs to allow safe and dependable access to the mine operation.  Collaborating with my local elected officials to secure the needed resources for our district continues to be my number one goal.”

“We greatly appreciate Senator Reed’s steadfast support for Alabama’s coal industry,” said Patrick Cagle, president of the Alabama Mining Association. “West Alabama is fortunate to have a senator who gets results for his constituents and the industries that create jobs in his district.”

“This is a long awaited and much needed roadway improvement project for my County Commission District.  I believe the partnership between Senator Reed and the County Commission, demonstrates how projects can and should be done to achieve infrastructure improvements that translate into greater economic success overall,” stated Tuscaloosa County Commissioner Stan Acker.  “I appreciate being a part of this announcement today and look forward to more success in the future.”

Senator Greg Reed is scheduled to visit Shoal Creek Mine on Wednesday, September 27th, and view the ongoing construction of Wallace Ferry/Blackburn Road alongside Representative Matt Woods, Tuscaloosa County Commissioner Stan Acker, Alabama Mining Association, United Mine Workers Association and Shoal Creek mine representatives.

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