Residents will see more truck traffic through Boonville next month when Alcoa starts transporting coal from the Vigo Liberty Mine.
It's a pretty big increase. About 300 more trucks a day will start coming through the already busy downtown area starting next month.
"There has always been a lot of truck traffic through the City of Boonville, and we will regenerate that to a degree. But from what I understand, it will be about 25 percent less than the last big influx we had," Boonville Mayor Pam Hendrickson said.
Alcoa will be receiving it's first coal shipment from a mine north of the city and for at least two to four months will have to make that transport through the square.
It is a temporary route. Beginning this summer, coal will be transported by rail as a coal preparation facility is built.
"There is a considerable amount of traffic on the square, which can be a good thing. But the heavy trucks can be a burden, not only on the square but also probably on the infrastructure within the city," Steve Bennett, who works on the square, said.
"We don't like seeing the trucks in the city because the condition of the streets deteriorate, but we don't hold anything at all against the truck drivers. We know they have to have jobs and we are not anti-truckers," Mayor Hendrickson said.
Because Alcoa is able to keep cost down by using local coal, they say they are able to keep about 2,000 employees. The mine is expected to hire 70 to 80 employees.
And hopefully a more permanent driving solution is in the near future with the Boonville overpass, that was already supposed to be built.
"There was a pot of money there and that money wasn't to go anywhere else and stay specifically for this project. Of course it disappeared," Mayor Hendrickson said.
INDOT says the overpass is still in the books, but has been pushed back to 2015.
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