The recommendation to use a road cut rather than a tunnel was made by Harland Bartholomew and other consultants in their 1960 report to the Birmingham Downtown Improvement Association and the Jefferson County Commission. Originally proposed as the Red Mountain Tunnel Project, a cut was instead selected due to its lower construction costs. The Red Mountain Cut (known as “the Cut”) likely more geologic history than any other road cut in the U.S. One of the most recognizable geological features in the Birmingham area, it was honored in 1987 as a National Natural Landmark, an area that’s a significant example of the nation’s natural heritage. Get directions, find nearby businesses and places, and much more. Kirkup (excluded for 20/21 season). In the late 1980’s the interpretive walkway was closed to the public after the Red Mountain Museum closed over safety concerns of potential rock slides. ", Coman, Victoria L. (May 15, 2007) "Vote on selling museum site to St. Cecilia nuns expected.". This highway linked Birmingham with its southern suburbs and spurred suburban growth towards the south of Birmingham. The Landmark designation reads: The Red Mountain Expressway Cut exhibits an unusual combination of stratigraphic and structural features that record the geological development of this part of the Southern Appalachian fold belt during Paleozoic time. Please remember, National Natural Landmarks (NNLs) are not national parks. This page has been accessed 16,945 times. - Significance: The Red Mountain Expressway Cut through Red Mountain is designated as a National Natural Landmark by the United States Department of Interior and as a National Site of Geological Interest by the American Geological Institute. The others are along Interstate 70 near Denver, Colorado and Interstate 68 in western Maryland. Traditionally, official and government files were tied shut with red silk tape. Significantly, the cut reveals the cross-section of the red ore seam that spurred Birmingham's development and a layer containing fossils of … A group of geologists associated with UAB visited the newly-exposed rock strata during the late stages of construction, measuring geologic layers. The Red Mountain Expressway Cut through Red Mountain is designated as a National Natural Landmark by the United States Department of Interior and as a National Site of Geologic Interest by the American Geological Institute. Red Mountain Expressway Cut (Google Maps). The engineers evaluated a total of 23 possible routes across the mountain, which they narrowed down to six preferred candidates, three in tunnels and three exposed as cuts. On Feb. 6, 1963, contractors broke ground on the Red Mountain Cut, which allowed Red Mountain Expressway to be routed through, rather than over, the topography. Due to high cost and time, engineers discarded a proposal to create a tunnel through the red ore and instead built the Red Mountain Expressway Cut, which exposes geological strata that spans millions of years. The Red Mountain Expressway Cut exhibits an unusual combination of stratigraphic and structural features that record the geological development of this part of the Southern Appalachian fold belt during Paleozoic time. In the late 1960s the Red Mountain cut was dug through Red Mountain for a new expressway. Digging and grading took 7 years, from 1962 to 1969, and the cut was opened to traffic in 1970. A passionate third-grade class at Shades Cahaba Elementary started a letter writing campaign to ask state leaders to help restore the rock cut on the Red Mountain Expressway, which is overgrown with plant life that could damage 190 million years of geological history visible in the cut. In 1970, the "Red Mountain Expressway" was completed after many years of work cutting through Red Mountain. The original construction plan called for the exposed rock to be sprayed with concrete; however, after much protest from geologists from the Geological Survey of Alabama, Birmingham-Southern College, and the Alabama Geological Society, the Alabama Department of Transportation was convinced to discontinue covering the rock strata. Proceeds from the sale will be directed to the McWane Science Center. The route finally selected ("Cut Route D") was the one projected to involve the least cost in purchasing right-of-way and executing construction work. A cut was selected due to lower construction costs. http://www.nature.nps.gov/nnl/. The Red Mountain Expressway Cut, also known as the Red Mountain Geological Cut, is a section of Red Mountain that was blasted and removed in the 1960s to allow the Red Mountain Expressway to enter downtown Birmingham, Alabama.This highway links Birmingham with its southern suburbs of Homewood, Mountain Brook, and Vestavia Hills.It has spurred suburban growth towards the south of … Special features include caves, volcanic ash layers, the Red Mountain fault line, prehistoric reefs and beaches, fossils and fossil tracks. Designation: 1987. The Red Mountain cut is a 210-foot-deep, 1,640-foot-long highway cut created through Red Mountain for the Red Mountain expressway, an extension of Highway 31 and Highway 280 into downtown Birmingham. Construction began in 1962, and it took seven years of digging and grading at a cost of $19 million before the cut was completed and open for traffic. It is one of only three such "interpretive cuts" in the United States. Some articles on red mountain, mountain, mountains: List Of National Natural Landmarks In Alabama Red Mountain Expressway Cut 01987-11-01November 1987 Birmingham Jefferson Part of Red Mountain Park, this expressway cut through Red Mountain and … The project removed around 2 million cubic yards of Red Mountain. “The Cut” was created by blasting through part of Red Mountain in the 1960s to extend the Red Mountain Expressway into downtown Birmingham. (April 23, 2006) "McWane eyes Red Mountain path revival: Cut near old museum site puts rock history on display. - Significance: The Red Mountain Expressway Cut through Red Mountain is designated as a National Natural Landmark by the United States Department of Interior and as a National Site of Geological Interest by the American Geological Institute. Red Mountain Expressway Cut, a National Natural Landmark in Alabama. #1 Red Mountain Expressway Cut Park Updated: 2019-03-20 The Red Mountain Expressway Cut, also known as the Red Mountain Geological Cut, is a section of Red Mountain that was blasted and removed in the 1960s to allow the Red Mountain Expressway to enter downtown Birmingham, Alabama. The strata exposed by the cut were formed over 160 million years of geologic time. In one location, because the strata are tilted, exposed rocks represent a 150-million-year geological record along a distance of only 650 feet. Red Mountain Expressway Cut. The project represented the latest in a series of proposals to create a Red Mountain Tunnel through the ridge to connect Birmingham to Homewood and other new residential areas to the South. The walkway, terraced into the rock, included interpretive signage, guardrails, and fencing that allowed visitors to safely inspect the various strata of 190 million years of exposed rock. The dramatic color and texture of the rocks exposed along the Red Mountain Cut leaves an impression on drivers zipping along the Elton B. Stephens Expressway. 7 years later, at a cost of $19 million, the cut was completed and open for traffic. An emergency appeal to Governor George Wallace led to a reversal of plans to cover the cut face. Corridor activity mapping An interactive map that displays: Road occupancy permits Temporary road closure permits Capital projects View the corridor activity online mapping Road closures are listed in Red_Mountain_Expressway_Cut.jpg. The strata exposed by the cut were formed over 160 million years of geologic time. In 2006 McWane president Tim Ritchie and staff paleontologist James Lamb discussed the possibility of selling the former Red Mountain Museum property, but keeping a public access to the walkway, which could be renovated and reopened. Red Mountain Expressway Cut ← Back to listing of NNL sites in AL. Discovery 2000, Inc. would later become the McWane Science Center in 1998. This highway links Birmingham with its southern suburbs of Homewood, Mountain Brook, and Vestavia Hills. This highway links Birmingham with its southern suburbs of Homewood, Mountain Brook, and … Together they moved to downtown Birmingham in 1998 and became the McWane Science Center. Explore Red Mountain Expressway Cut in Birmingham, AL as it appears on Google Maps as well as pictures, stories and other notable nearby locations on VirtualGlobetrotting.com. When informed that the surface was due to be sealed with a layer of concrete in a matter of days, one of the scientists resorted to lying down in front of the concrete truck to stall their progress. See 1 tip from 162 visitors to Red Mountain Expressway Cut Interpretive Walkway. In 1987 the Red Mountain Expressway Cut was granted National Natural Landmark status by the National Park Service. BACKGROUND: Mining began on the Red Mountain Road cut in 1963 eventually exposing an unparalleled sequence of strata that caught the attention of geologists across the country. All the evaluated options used 26th Street South as the starting point. One pass through our Iron Curtain. Museum-sponsored paleontologists recovered a large collection of fossils which now form the core of a valuable collection of Alabama fossils held by the McWane Science Center. The Cut is one of seven National Natural Landmarks in Alabama. The removal of 2 million cubic yards of the ridge of Red Mountain exposed over 190 million years of geologic strata dating to over 500 million years ago. (Wikimedia Commons) The Iron Curtain was an ideological (in some … RED Mountain Resort delivers 3,850 acres of pristine skiing, putting us in Top 10 terrain territory in N. America. The cities of Birmingham, Homewood, Mountain Brook and Vestavia Hills subsidized the study along with the County Commission and Alabama State Highway Department. Sponsors: BCBS | Alabama Power Foundation | 3M | Freshwater Land Trust | Stephens Foundation | Cawaco RC&D, © 2011–2020 TREK BIRMINGHAM | The Red Mountain Expressway Cut exhibits an unusual combination of stratigraphic and structural features that record the geological development of this part of the Southern Appalachian fold belt during Paleozoic time. Previous to the opening of the Red Mountain Expressway Cut, locals had to travel over Red Mountain’s high rolling hills to reach downtown Birmingham. In 1991, the Red Mountain Museum partnered with a nearby children's science museum, The Discovery Place, to form "Discovery 2000". The project removed around two million cubic yards of the Red Mountain ridge, which exposed over 190 million years of geologic strata dating back over 500 million years. The Red Mountain Expressway Cut, also known as the Red Mountain Geological Cut, is a section of Red Mountain that was blasted and removed in the 1960s to allow the Red Mountain Expressway to enter downtown Birmingham, Alabama. The result was a 210-foot-deep, 1,640-foot-long highway cut created through Red Mountain, later renamed the Elton B. Stephens Expressway. In 2007, the City of Birmingham and the McWane Science Center reached an agreement with the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation to purchase the former Red Mountain Museum for use as parking for its St. Rose Academy. The Red Mountain Museum was established in 1971 adjacent to the east side of the cut on Arlington Road. Deemed unsafe because of the potential for rockslides, the interpretive trail has since been closed to the public. The Ordovician, Silurian, Devonian and Mississippian geologic periods are visible in the cut. Contact Between Mississippian Chert (top) and Silurian Sandstone (bottom) (5334204190).jpg 1,069 × 1,600; 586 KB The planners also considered the route's "s-curve" to have aesthetic appeal. Red Mountain Expressway Cut was created in 1960. a portion of the Red Mountain Cut In 1970, the "Red Mountain Expressway" was completed after many years of work cutting through Red Mountain. The Red Mountain Expressway Cut, also known as the Red Mountain Geological Cut, is a section of Red Mountain that was blasted and removed in the 1960s to allow the Red Mountain Expressway to enter downtown Birmingham, Alabama. Natural features represented include a tupelo gum swamp located unusually far north, cave ecosystems and karst topography, and one of the most important wetland ecosystems in the nation. "Don't be here Monday through Friday from 4-5pm." The Red Mountain Expressway Cut exhibits an unusual combination of stratigraphic and structural features that record the geological development of this part of the Southern Appalachian fold belt during Paleozoic time. ← Back to listing of all states and territories. The Cut itself is owned by the Alabama Department of Transportation. In 2007 the City of Birmingham reached an agreement with the Dominican Sisters of St Cecilia Congregation to purchase the former Red Mountain Museum for $606,632 for use as parking for its Saint Rose Academy. In 1960, the City of Birmingham selected Harland Bartholomew to create a cut through the Red Mountain ridge to connect downtown to new residential neighborhoods to the south, such as Homewood. Red Mountain Expressway. 900 ARKADELPHIA RD BIRMINGHAM, AL 35204, Watercress Darter National Wildlife Refuge, Red Mountain Cut National Natural Landmark. “The Cut” in Red Mountain (Source: McWane Science Center) In 1962, construction began on what was originally proposed as the Red Mountain Tunnel project. Along with opening up easy car access to the Over the mountain suburbs, the cut exposed a striking geological panorama rich with fossil finds. Special features include caves, volcanic ash layers, the Red Mountain fault line, prehistoric reefs and beaches, fossils and fossil tracks. The strata exposed by the cut were formed over 160 million years of geologic time. A new chairlift on Topping Creek streamlines skier flow to Grey Mountain and we continue our unique offering of $10/run cat skiing on the flanks of stunning Mt. This highway linked Birmingham with its southern suburbs and spurred suburban growth towards the south of Birmingham. Ownership: Municipal. Additionally, the exposed rocks contain a rare Silurian trilobite species. The project represented the latest in a series of proposals to create a Red Mountain Tunnel through the ridge to connect Birmingham to Homewood and other new residential … You must log in to access this page. The city would retain the small neighborhood park adjacent to the museum, and the locked access to the Red Mountain cut walkway. Birmingham Downtown Improvement Association, Dominican Sisters of St Cecilia Congregation, 11½ million Red Mtn. As further testimony to the geologic story told so beautifully by a cut in the rock, a new city-owned natural history museum, the Red Mountain Museum, opened on the slope adjacent to the cut in 1971 and an interpretive trail was built above the highway. And exposed 190 million … This page was last modified on 3 December 2018, at 13:09. In one location, because the strata are tilted, exposed rocks represent a 150 million-year geological record along a distance of only 650 feet. Red Mountain Expressway Cut. expressway cut urged, History of Birmingham – The Cut in Red Mountain, https://www.bhamwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=Red_Mountain_cut&oldid=152386, White, Marjorie Longenecker (1981) "Red Mountain Museum" in, Hickerson, Patrick. The expressway was planned as a six-lane limited-access highway to accommodate anticipated traffic demand for 1980 (29,400 cars and 990 heavy trucks per day). The interpretive signs were left in place on the trail. Interpretive signage was installed along one of the eastern terraces of the cut and guardrails and fencing installed to allow museum visitors to inspect the exposed rock close-up. In 1994, the Red Mountain Museum moved from its mountainside location to downtown Birmingham after it partnered with a nearby children’s science museum, the Discovery Place, to form Discovery 2000, Inc. The section exposes geological strata that span millions of years. Explore Red Mountain Expressway Cut in Birmingham, AL as it appears on Google Maps and Bing Maps as well as pictures, stories and other notable nearby locations on VirtualGlobetrotting.com. These geologists recognized the geologic importance of the Cut, and a single act of lying down in front of the gunnite (liquid concrete spray) truck prevented the Cut from being completely covered, although a portion on the northern end was sprayed. Main article: Red Mountain Expressway Cut. Login to your Triposo account. Significantly, the cut reveals the cross-section of the red ore seam that spurred Birmingham's development and a layer containing fossils of a unique Silurian trilobite species. They contain the NNL status does not indicate public ownership, and many sites are not open for visitation. There are seven National Natural Landmark sites located within the state of Alabama. Media in category "Red Mountain Expressway Cut" The following 12 files are in this category, out of 12 total. The Red Mountain cut is a 210-foot-deep, 1,640-foot-long highway cut created through Red Mountain for the Red Mountain expressway, an extension of Highway 31 and Highway 280 into downtown Birmingham. The impetus for the museum grew out of the protests of geologists from the Geological Survey of Alabama, Birmingham-Southern College, and the Alabama Geological Society, who, with the support of the Linn-Henley Charitable Trust, convinced the Highway department to stop spraying concrete over the exposed rock strata. This highway links Birmingham with its southern suburbs of Homewood, Mountain Brook, and Vestavia Hills. It has spurred suburban growth towards the south of … The City of Hamilton's listing of scheduled temporary full road closures for: construction filming special events The listing does not include unscheduled or emergency closures. 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