On Thursday, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (R) announced three significant infrastructure improvements in the Huntsville area, including the expansion of U.S. Highway 72 West, Alabama Highway 53 and Interstate 565. Ivey made the announcement during an address to the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber of Commerce.

State Sens. Tom Butler (R-Madison) and Arthur Orr (R-Decatur) as well as Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong (R), Madison Mayor Paul Finley and Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle (R) released statements praising Gov. Ivey’s announced infrastructure improvements.

“I was glad to join Gov. Kay Ivey as she announced several significant infrastructure projects impacting North Alabama,” said Butler. “The economic development and growth in Alabama’s Second District is booming with the U.S. Space Command, FBI relocation, Mazda Toyota Manufacturing plant and many more ventures bringing thousands of jobs to the area. Four years ago, I walked car to car on Highway 72 and promised the people of the Second District that I would work toward solving the challenges we face with our infrastructure. Today’s announcement was the first major step to ensuring that promise is delivered. I am thankful for Gov. Ivey’s leadership and support, which have allowed these much-needed projects to launch.”

Orr stated that the projects will benefit not just the Third District or North Alabama, but the entire state.

“The improvement of Alabama’s roads and highways enhances conditions for drivers and allows for further opportunity to grow the economy, develop the workforce and strengthen key industries – all of which are critical to Alabama’s future and the ability to remain competitive with our neighboring states," said Orr.

The three major infrastructure projects are part of the Restore Our Roads - Round II [ROR2] plan. Huntsville and Madison city governments, along with Madison County Commission, will collectively provide a match of 40%, while the state will cover 60%.

“These major arteries carry commuters from a 17 county region that travel here every day," said Strong. "This is another example of how we can do big things when we work together as a region.”

“To be a growing, prosperous city you have to have a transportation grid that supports the needs of your workforce,” Battle said. “These three major projects are a strong start in accomplishing our ROR2 plan to keep metro Huntsville thriving and provide a high quality of life.”

Battle credits the effort to complete ROR2 to strong working partnerships with the local legislative delegation, including Butler, State Reps. Rex Reynolds and Andy Whitt, as well as the Madison County Commission and the city of Madison.

Huntsville Director of Urban & Economic Development Shane Davis praised the commitment of elected leaders to work together to advance public infrastructure needs. He agreed with Orr that the projects ultimately benefit all Alabamians, regardless of jurisdiction.

“By working together, we are able to sustain the quality of life our citizens expect, manage current growth and remain a strong community for future job growth,” Davis said. “Gov. Ivey understands the infrastructure needs in Alabama. We thank her in supporting the effort of jointly putting our resources together to advance these road projects.”

It’s been a great day in the Rocket City where I gave an update on Alabama during the @huntsvillealcoc’s luncheon. I have a strong partnership w/ many of their members & have been honored to attend numerous groundbreakings/openings over the years. #alpolitics 1/4 pic.twitter.com/C6X3rcUh62

— Governor Kay Ivey (@GovernorKayIvey) April 14, 2022

Huntsville is now the largest city in Alabama and the only one of Alabama's four largest cities to experience any growth during the 2020 Census.

Butler and Orr represent Alabama’s Second and Third Districts, which are both located in North Alabama. Both are running for re-election. Butler faces a primary challenge from former State Sen. Bill Holtzclaw.

Strong is running in the May 24 Republican primary for the open Fifth Congressional District.

Ivey, who made road improvements a focus of her first term as governor, is also running for re-election in the May 24 Republican primary.

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