Skip to main content

Triangle Expressway Updates...Full Speed Ahead

With all the funding from a variety of sources in place, the North Carolina Turnpike Authority yesterday officially awarded the construction contracts of the 18.8 mile Triangle Expressway. If, and that's a big if, all goes well we will see the entire highway open to traffic in 2012.

Wilson, NC based S.T. Wooten Corp will build the 3.4 miles of the Triangle Parkway at a cost of $137.5 million. This will build the toll road from NC 147 in RTP to NC 540 at Davis Drive. The project will also include a toll plaza on NC 540.

Two companies - Archer Western Contractors of Atlanta and Granite Construction of Watsonville, CA - combined to create Raleigh/Durham Roadbuilders to extend NC 540 from its current end 12.6 miles south to the NC 55 Bypass in Holly Springs. That contract is worth $446.5 million.

2.8 miles of currently open - and free - NC 540 from Davis Drive to NC 55 near Apex will be incorporated into the toll road.

Surveying is to begin this week - and an official ground breaking ceremony will be held on August 12th.

Story Links:
Turnpike board starts spending for toll road ---Raleigh News & Observer
Turnpike Authority awards contracts for state toll road ---WRAL-TV

Commentary:
So it begins, after nearly two years of teasing, construction of North Carolina's first toll road is set to begin. The road will be opened in two segments; and depending on which news story you read, the road will be completed in its entirety by 2012 or 2013. Of course, if the NCTA is anything like the NCDOT it will most likely be delayed.

Here at the blog, we have three members of our team within ear shot of this project - myself, Brian LeBlanc, and Bob Malme. All three of us will be covering different parts of this project - from construction progress and delays - discovering what the TOLL NC Highway shields will look like - to any political obstacles that will inevitably get in the way.

Hopefully one or all three of us will be at the groundbreaking on August 12th and we'll be here to file a report.

Comments

Bob Malme said…
I'll plan to be there for the groundbreaking (given that this is a toll road, will there be an entrance fee?). If any divvying up of the project coverage would work, I'm happy to take on the Triangle Parkway segment since it's closest to me.

Popular posts from this blog

The story on how the unbuilt US 40 Expressway in Brownsville took 40 years to complete.

For nearly four decades, the four lane US 40 just east of Brownsville came to an abrupt end - shown in the photo above - at Grindstone Road in Redstone Township.   In the late 1960s, what was then the Pennsylvania Division of Highways (PennDOH) extended a new four lane alignment of US 40 eastwards from Broadway Street slightly over one mile to Grindstone Road where an incomplete diamond interchange was built.  Earlier in the decade, PennDOH had built a four lane US 40 in Washington County into Brownsville complete with a new crossing over the Monongahela River known as the Lane Bane Bridge.  This new highway and bridge allowed US 40 to bypass the older Intercounty Bridge and downtown Brownsville. 

After this new highway opened, nothing would happen to it for nearly forty years.  US 40 traffic would use the ramps for this planned diamond interchange and then jog on Grindstone Road briefly before continuing towards Uniontown on the original National Road. 
What is unknown (at least to…

The story of the Boy Scout Ramps on Interstate 79 North in NW Pennsylvania

If you are traveling on Interstate 79 North of Pittsburgh, you may notice the remnants of a set of off and on ramps at mile 100 just north of Exit 99 (US 422).  There's a story behind these ramps.  Forty years ago, these ramps were built specifically for two Boy Scout Jamboree's that were held at Moraine State Park - 1973 and 1977.  The ramps purpose were to provide access to the north shore of Lake Arthur where the bulk of the festivities and campsite for the Jamboree were located.  (Lawrence County Memories has a great write up and map of the festivities on its site.)

Not long after the Jamboree ended the ramps were abandoned.  There are still remnants of the Boy Scout Ramps today.



Above: Sattelite view of the Boy Scout Jamboree Ramps. 
Below: A view of the ramps from I-79 South.



The google street view image above gives a view along West Park Road of where the set of ramps intersected the highway.  The ramps provided direct access to North Shore Drive (which is the right tur…

The few clues of the Northern Durham Parkway

Sometimes when you look through a box of maps for the first time in five years, you come across something you may have easily over looked.  Such was the case when I found a 2004 (so rather recent) map of Raleigh.  This map was made by the Dolph Map Company for WakeMed.  In the Northwestern corner of Wake County, there were two items to the map showing roads that are still not in existence 13 years later.

The road is the Northern Durham Parkway - this is a proposed 19 mile highway from US 501 north of Durham to the Raleigh-Durham International Airport.  The first proposals for this highway date back to 1967 when Eno Drive-Gorman Road was listed on the Durham Area Thoroughfare Plan. (1)  Other proposals called the highway the Northwest and Northeast Durham Loop. (2)  The route would serve as a northern and eastern bypass of Durham almost serving as a near loop.  The route was fought vigorously for three decades by the Eno River Association citing concerns for the the Eno River, nearby n…