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Showing posts from June, 2009

NCTA: A delay in Mid-Currituck Bridge study may save $60 million

....and I am not kidding either.

The North Carolina Turnpike Administration announced earlier this week that a new design option - one that they have just begun to look at from the past two weeks - may cut $60 million from the cost of the bridge.

The new possible design came in the preliminary Draft Environmental Impact Study (DEIS) that was to have come out earlier this year. The NCTA is planning on delaying the release of the study until September. The Turnpike Authority states that the delay will not push back the hopeful start of construction of the bridge (late 2010) and its eventual completion (sometime in 2013).

The original estimates on the toll bridge's cost was $659.2 million. If the new design change - one that would change the location of tollbooths on the mainland/US 158 side of the bridge -, comes to fruition, the expected cost is closer to $600 million.

According to the NCTA, one of the benefits in delaying the study's release - is that taking the new tollbooth…

More Signage Changes on Greensboro Loop

NCDOT posted an announcement this afternoon that they were closing 2 of 3 lanes on I-40 East at the Loop/PTI Airport/To Bryan Blvd. exit to post signs. This is hopefully to change the signs finally on the western I-40/Loop junction. Too bad I didn't know about that this morning when I went to Greensboro to photograph other recent changes, and they are many.

Starting on the I-85 Loop with the US 421 exit. The exit for US 421 North Greensboro, now just reads Greensboro, as seen below:
This is heading on the C/D ramp northbound but the Exit 126B sign south says the same thing.
They have not changed any of the ground signage which still indicates this part of the Loop is I-40/I-85.

The I-73/I-40/I-85 'Interstate Triplex' Sign is no more. Signage has been changed along the highway itself to reflect the new reality. The sign now only has 2 interstates and 1 US highway shield. Note they have not done any changes to the US 220 exit (either on the Loop or US 220/Future I-73 itself:
The …

North Carolina Turnpike Authority to hold public hearings on Garden Parkway this week

The often talked about - and still yet to be built - Garden Parkway - begins another step closer to reality this week as the North Carolina Turnpike Authority (NCTA) holds public hearings this week in Gaston and Mecklenburg Counties.

The Garden Parkway - also known as the Gaston East-West Connector - has been talked about for decades and received a rebirth when the NCTA was created a few years ago.

The public hearings and open houses are as scheduled:
The turnpike authority will hold Pre-Hearing Open Houses all this week:Monday, June 22, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Gastonia Adult Recreation Center, 519 W. Franklin Blvd, Gastonia;Tuesday, June 23, from 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Forestview High School, 5545 Union Rd, Gastonia;Wednesday, June 24, from 2:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at South Point High School, 906 South Point Rd, Belmont; andThursday, June 25, from 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Olympic High School, 4301 Sandy Porter Rd, Charlotte.Officials with the turnpike authority will hold public…

Obama vs. Byrd - The Battle over Corridor H

An interesting battle is shaping up in the future of Corridor H in West Virginia - and it involves the President and maybe the most influential United States Senator when it comes to highway projects.

The battle is over $10 million in funds for Corridor H in the 2009-2010 Federal Budget. Obama wants to eliminate it - as part of $17 billion in wasteful spending cuts. Byrd - obviously wants to keep it.

The $10 million was to fund additional construction of the road from Davis, WV to Forman, WV.

Will this be a death blow to Corridor H? Not at all - First, the budget has to be approved by both houses of Congress - and Byrd can easily reinsert the funding for Corridor H into it. Byrd has the support of a number of West Virginia Congressmen and fellow Seantor Jay Rockefeller.

Also, Governor Joe Manchin directed $21 million of federal stimulus money towards the highway.

Considering Byrd's power in the Senate - I think the $10 million in additional funds will return to the budget, but with…

NCDOT - We'll finish the Charlotte Outer Loop by 2012 - Oh wait, we still have to buy land first though - and then there is that funding problem

From the highway that never stops giving us something to write about - Interstate 485 in Charlotte - we have new news.

Earlier this year, newly elected Governor Beverly Perdue proclaimed that the final piece of construction of Interstate 485 would begin this year. This after a number of years of delays on completing the entire loop.

Well recently, NC Secretary of Transportation Gene Conti said that work will still begin on the final pieces of 485 this year and a 2012 completion date is still in the work. Well, not exactly. (It appears I need to bring back the picture of Lee Corso..."Not So Fast, My Friend!)

There are a few hurdles still left - first the state needs to spend $16 million in acquiring property for construction of the freeway. In fact, Conti concedes that actually construction - you know moving earth, clearing trees and what not - most likely won't begin this year.

In fact, he told Al Gardner of WBT-AM in Charlotte, "I don't think that we can start cons…

Latest I-74 Construction/I-40 Greensboro Signage Road Trip Report

I took a Flag Day road trip west to check out progress on I-74 around High Point and, along the way, see if any progress had been made since my last trip with resigning I-40 through Greensboro.

I-40 Greensboro Signing
I thought the road closures the last 2 weekends between the I-85 loop west to Death Valley would allow for replacement of some of the ground-mounted signage, along with repaving of the road. Sadly, that was not true. Everything that had not been changed as of 3 weeks ago is still the same. This is also true of the signage along I-40 west of the Business 85 split, still overheads with US 421 and US 421 signs accompanying I-40, though at the entrance ramps I saw, there were just I-40 shields, don't know whether this is new or not. Same story on the SW portion of the Loop, no change, but there were areas around some ground mounted exit signage were orange barrels had been placed suggesting lane closure for some future work. Disappointed, I headed down I-85 south to I-74 c…

Sign Foul!

Sign Foul!
Originally uploaded by Adam's Journey On my trip yesterday through the Sandhills - I came across this unique US 1/15/501 combination in Tramway!