The Dadeville City Council has been talking about the courthouse renovation project for five years.

But the wait is over.

“Contractors started July 25,” Dadeville Mayor Wayne Smith said. “It’s moving a little slow but it should be finished by mid-December. It’s a 120-working-day contract.”

The project involves everything visible around the courthouse in Dadeville but not the buildings. 

“There will be all new sidewalks, lighting and landscaping in the corners,” Smith said. “There will be all new paving. The lighting will be real nice. There will be 12 new cast light poles with receptacles at the top and bottom. There will be irrigation for the landscaping.”

Currently contractors have removed the old sidewalks along Cusseta Street and had started to remove the old concrete roadway to make way for base work in the road but had to stop.

“They found a water line that was not in any of the plans,” Smith said. “City crews will move it to save money. All of the other utilities around the square feed buildings from the back.”

The roadwork is required as Cusseta Street will become part of Highway 49 and work has to meet Alabama Department of Transportation requirements.

“There will be two lanes of one directional continual traffic flow around the courthouse,” Smith said.

The new traffic flow should make parking around the courthouse easier as all the diagonal parking will be in the same direction.

“They will also redo the back parking lot at the courthouse,” Smith said. 

The work also required the removal of several plants and trees around the square.

“Many of the crepe myrtles and a Japanese maple were moved to property on East South Street,” Smith said. “It’s the wrong time of year but Raphord Farrington and Jerry McGukin moved them and now they are doing well.”

New landscaping will be installed including crepe myrtles according to Smith.

“The (crepe myrtles) they moved are too big for this,” Smith said. “If they didn’t move them, they would have ended up in a dump.”

The project started pn paper five years ago with the Dadeville City Council and the Tallapoosa County Commission applying for and receiving Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) Grants. Part of the delay in the project is bids came in over budget, but the Alabama Department of Transportation covered the overage of $475,000. The commission is funding its grant match as is Dadeville but Dadeville is responsible for the oversight of the project.

“The city is responsible for 57% of the matching funds, the county is responsible for 47%,” Smith said.

Dadeville city officials said the total project will cost $1.6 million. $960,000 is coming from the TAP grants, $240,000 is coming from the City of Dadeville and the Tallapoosa County Commission as grant matches and ALDOT is providing the remainder.

“Projects always seem to take twice as long and cost twice as much as you think,” Smith said.

Smith asked for the public’s patience as the project moves along.

“There will be no work along the stretch on Tallassee Street during November and December,” Smith said. “Christmas is a big deal for them. It’s a mess now but it will be nice when it is finished.”

Cliff Williams is a staff writer for Tallapoosa Publishers.

Staff Writer

Cliff Williams is a staff writer for Tallapoosa Publishers.