Several redesigned entrance and exit ramps from I-59/20 and I-65 in Birmingham, Ala., are expected to be open to the public later this month.
Gov. Kay Ivey made the announcement Wednesday from the top of the ramp leading to I-65 South from 17th Street North in Birmingham, the tallest ramp planned in the multiyear project to redesign the interchanges of I-59/20 and I-65, and then replace the existing 59/20 bridges through downtown.
Ramps planned to open by Aug. 31 include on-ramps from 11th Avenue North (at 17th Street) leading to I-65 North and South, as well as I-59/20 South toward Tuscaloosa; and exit ramps from I-65 North and I-59/20 North to 17th Street.
Officials with the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) said the department is hopeful the new ramps will lead to improved traffic flow and the end of the "Malfunction Junction" nickname for that interchange. An ALDOT engineer said the opening of the new exits should improve traffic immediately after opening, and that the new ramps will eliminate scenarios in which drivers had to cross multiple lanes of traffic to take certain exits around downtown.