Save Our Unique River, Communities and Environment (SOURCE) is a grassroots group of citizens who have serious concerns about adverse impacts of the Northern Beltline on our natural environment; especially the Cahaba River; and our neighborhoods and communities.
SOURCE was initiated by Clay and Trussville citizens, but, has grown to include citizens of other communities and has broad based support throughout Jefferson and surrounding counties, primarily because of a concern for the Cahaba.
WHY WE ORGANIZED
SOURCE is working to protect our environmental resources, especially the Cahaba River; our communities and personal property from needless destruction by construction of a highway that is not justified by, or based upon, its projected traffic volume.
The costs of highway construction are staggering – not only monetarily, but in terms of destruction of our environment, communities and personal property. Citizens must foot the bill, give up their property and/or their quality of life and live with the environmental consequences forever.
For years, these concerns about the Northern Beltline have been expressed by citizens and agencies to public officials and the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT). Elected officials can and do influence highway construction decisions, but, it often takes a united voice for citizens to be heard.
View this compelling documentary of one family's struggle to save their homes and heritage:
ARE CITIZENS’ CONCERNS ABOUT HIGHWAY IMPACTS VALID?
The magnitude of highway construction impacts on the lives of citizens is well recognized by our nation’s laws and policy statements of transportation agencies. The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and other federal environmental mandates have been enacted to help protect citizens and their environment from adverse impacts of federal projects. In letters of May 2005 and October 2006, The Southern Environmental Law Center cited legal issues and expressed concerns with regard to ALDOT’s adherence to federal regulations, including the NEPA process.
Over a decade ago, the Federal Highway Administration and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials acknowledged that highway design and construction “must be more sensitive to the impact of highways on the environment and communities” and adopted a Context Sensitive Design (CSD) policy, calling for design standards that “integrate safety, environmental, scenic, historic, community and preservation concerns”. http://www.contextsensitivesolutions.org/content/topics/what_is_css/core-principles/
Five years ago, the FHWA administrator issued a memo calling for implementation of the CSD policy by state departments of transportation, stating, “A transportation facility is an integral part of the community’s fabric and it can help define the character of the community or it can destroy it.”