Beat I-10 Tunnel Traffic At Mobile, AL

Updated on August 17, 2016

When Summer Attacks

In the summer, I-10 is clogged from Mississippi to Florida with vacationers visiting the beautiful sugar sand and emerald water beaches along the Gulf Coast, particularly the Florida Panhandle and Orange Beach, Alabama. The I-10 George Wallace tunnel has a huge design flaw, an extremely curved entrance, that slows down traffic and has even resulted in deaths. Don't drive beside large trucks on the curved part; there have been two accidents in particular from two-tiered cattle trailers where the cargo shifted on the angled curve, resulting in deaths as the truck toppled over on the car traveling beside it. Some may feel death is preferable to the slow madness that occurs when one is backed up for as much as three hours at the tunnel either on the Bayway, a 6.2 mile stretch with few ramps on or off, or at the west side of the tunnel.

This Is A Small Traffic Jam

Cruise Through It Like A Local

Even political luminaries such as President Clinton's consultant James Carville have been caught in the grueling traffic, telling local officials, "I love Mobile, but that tunnel is the damnedest thing I ever saw. I tell you, going through there is a pain, and there just ain't no way around it." Actually there is another way; in addition, you'll go through some of the historic residential areas and it will save you time, if there is a traffic jam.

Is Traffic Backed Up To I-65?

  • Take I-65 to East on Government Street, which is also HWY 90.
  • Follow it through the Bankhead Tunnel and stay on the lower Causeway, which travels parallel to the Bayway.
  • You will be able to get back on I-10 at the next exit in Spanish Fort; look for the 1-10 signs.
  • You'll drive by Toomey's Mardi Gras—why not stop in and get some beads?
  • Further down, on Government Street downtown, visit the Carnival Museum and learn how Mobile started Mardi Gras.

Is Traffic Backed Up To Michigan Street Exit?

  • Take the exit North Michigan and follow it until it deadends at Walgreen's on Government Street/HWY 90,
  • Take a right and follow it through the Bankhead Tunnel, see above for more info.
  • The same goes for Broad Street; you would go right on Government/HWY 90.
  • On Government Street, you'll see Saucy Q Bar B Que, a local BBQ joint.
  • Or take a break for a tour of the Oakleigh Mansion and the Oakleigh Historic Complex on Roper Street with a famous hamburger at Callaghan's Irish Social Club on Marine Street.

Avoid Rush Hour Traffic

  • Fridays everyone takes off early so rush hour would be anytime after 2 p.m.
  • Get a great lunch of gumbo and a fried oyster po-boy at Wintzell's, a famous old seafood restaurant on Dauphin Street dating to the 1930s and then get on your way.

Summer Fridays—A Way To Bypass Both Tunnels!

  • Take the Cochrane-Africatown Bridge! In the past year, even Bankhead Tunnel (Government Street) is backing up on Friday afternoons.
  • Sometimes they close the Bankhead Tunnel for repairs as it is pretty old now (1941). Basically just follow the signs for "Hazardous Trucks."
  • Stay in the right lane of Government , as the left lane is for the tunnel.
  • Continue on past the tunnel until road deadends on Water Street.
  • Take a left and take I-165, soon you will take right on Africatown/Cochrane Bridge, go over the bridge and you will end up on the Causeway. This way was designed for trucks with hazardous chemicals.

A Transportation Quandary

Transportation over the waterways of Mobile have come a long way since my grandfather was a boy taking ferries over the Mobile Bay. Later, the Causeway was built in the 1930s and my mother remembers jaunts to beach that always included a stop at Wintzell's for some oysters. As traffic has increased due to poor initial design of the tunnel, there is talk of a bridge going over the heart of the historic districts, destroying the little heritage we have left. Tight-knit, thriving, and historic African-American communities south of Canal Street will be decimated financially as the footings for such a bridge will tower over their homes and cars high above will rain parts down below. Meanwhile, city officials refuse to post signage for unfamiliar travellers that would substantially educate and change traffic patterns to the benefit of everyone.

Proposed Bridge For I-10

Old City Hall— Royal Street

 Circa 1855 Old City Hall/Southern Market on Royal Street would be negatively impacted by the proposed bridge.
Circa 1855 Old City Hall/Southern Market on Royal Street would be negatively impacted by the proposed bridge. | Source

Enjoy the Bay As You Make Your Way

With some foreknowledge, enjoy the beauty of Mobile's bay as you make your way on I-10. With your help, we can help preserve such treasures as the Old Southern Market/Old City Hall, which is the oldest continually occupied city hall in the US, the Down the Bay historic community as well as the Church Street, Oakleigh Garden, Leinkauf Historic Districts, and our historic ship-building industries. Hopefully, your family can use this information to stay safe from dangerous accidents as well as you pass through Mobile's George Wallace tunnel.

Weigh In With These Polls!

Would You Take the Causeway To Avoid Traffic on I-10's Bayway/ in George Wallace Tunnel?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      14 months ago

      Anything would be better than getting stuck in the tunnel.

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      It's actually a major bottleneck and hazard to any orderly evacuation in most any significant emergency. I-10 is and has been inadequate for several years and will only get worse. Perhaps nearing one of the most dangerous to travel in the country. 4 lanes in even congested areas add to the perils of travel. Infrastructure must be addressed and very soon.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Mobile officials purposely delay the solution because it would make it easier not to live in that horrible place with horrible crime and horrible schools. They know the 50 year negative population growth would accelerate. So - the feds just need to intervene and take them out of the process - they're corrupt.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)