Eufaula’s North Eufaula Avenue/US431 is lined with grand old homes and an impressive tree canopy that shades countless dogwoods, azaleas, and other flowering trees and shrubs. Every April it serves as “Main Street” for the Eufaula Pilgrimage, Alabama’s oldest and best known historic home tour. At that time, thousands enjoy the scenic drive past stately antebellum homes and newer structures of architectural and historical distinction. The mature streetscape (in the Seth Lore and Irwinton National Register Historic District) is unmatched for its distinctive combination of historic architecture and landscape features.
Nevertheless, this historic streetscape is threatened by an Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) proposal to four-lane this section of the road at the expense of countless mature trees and shrubs and the gracious character of the place that is crucial to Eufaula’s Pilgrimage. The local community is united in opposition to widening N. Eufaula Ave. The City Council and its mayor (Jack Tibbs), the Eufaula Heritage Association, the Eufaula-Randolph Neighborhood Association, and the Eufaula-Barbour County Chamber of Commerce have all formally communicated their positions to ALDOT. In addition, the Historic Chattahoochee Commission, Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation and the National Trust for Historic Preservation are on record in opposition to widening the road. The State of Alabama Tourism Department and the Alabama Historical Commission also recognize the value of this historic streetscape. ALDOT has indicated that final plans have not yet been developed. Community leaders met with ALDOT Director John Cooper on May 12th in Eufaula but he held steadfast to his position that North Eufaula Avenue should be four-laned. A Save North Eufaula Avenue coalition has been formed and they are redoubling their efforts to turn aside this ill-conceived plan.
Alabama's Endangered Historic Landmarks
Each year since 1994, Alabama Heritage has highlighted threatened historic sites throughout Alabama. The “Places in Peril” list has identified more than 215 imperiled historic resources throughout the state, and is compiled by the Alabama Historical Commission and the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation. The locations highlight the results of deferred maintenance, perceived obsolescence, development pressures, and lack of funding—forces that now more than ever threaten our cultural legacy. But awareness is a powerful force, too, and can cultivate a renewed determination to be responsible stewards of our heritage. For more information, visit the AHC or the ATHP websites. Alabama Heritage is proud to bring to you a selection of the places designated as perilous. Please keep your comments to information relevant to the featured place in peril. Alabama Heritage reserves the right to delete any comment that we deem inappropriate.