Skip to main content

A full listing of NC Toll Projects and where they stand

An article in Friday's New Bern Sun Journal breaks down the status of the various proposed toll projects in North Carolina.

1. Triangle Expressway (Triangle Parkway & Western Wake Parkway)

Two toll parts. Part one: The Triangle Parkway - a 3.4 mile extension of NC 147 south and east to current NC 540 at Davis Drive. It's expected cost $110 million - $235 million. This section is the shortest toll project and could be open by 2010.

Part two: Western Wake Parkway - a 12.6 mile extension of NC 540 from NC 55 to Holly Springs. Estimated cost - $515 million - $930 million and could be open by 2011.

A request to cover a $20 million gap in funding for both projects is currently under debate in the NC General Assembly.

2. Garden Parkway (Gaston East-West Connector)

21.5 miles from I-485 near Charlotte-Douglas International Airport to I-85 west of US 321 in Gastonia. It is the longest and possibly most expensive of the toll projects. It will cost somewhere between $745 million and $1.6 billion.

The project would be built in stages. The first a 5.7 mile alignment from I-485 west over the Catawba River to NC 279 near Stowe Botanical Gardens south of Belmont. If funding is available, this could open by 2015. Tolls, which for the entire 21 mile section could run as high as $3, will not be enough to cover the costs to build the highway.

3. Monroe Connector & Bypass

Will run a close second to the Garden Parkway in length coming in at 21.1 miles. It will run from I-485 near Indian Trail to US 74 in Monroe. Costs between $352 million and $651 million. Portions of the highway could be open as soon as 2012.

4. Cape Fear Skyway

It will cost between $550 million and $1.2 billion to built the 9.5 highway and bridge over the Cape Fear River. It will connect US 17 in Brunswick County to US 421 south of downtown Wilmington. It has already been announced that tolls will cover about 55% of the costs to built the highway.

The Skyway could open as early as 2014. Supporters intend to ask for a 40 year annual allocation of $39 million from the state to finance the project.

A $1.75 toll for the entire 9.5 miles has been suggested for the Skyway.

5. Mid-Currituck Bridge

The seven mile highway and bridge would cost between $435 million and $928 million to build. The bridge would leave US 158 near Coinjock crossing the Currituck Sound to reach Corolla. Estimated opening is 2013.

6. I-74 in Brunswick County

What appears to be the least likely of toll projects to be built, the 18 mile project has preliminary costs of nearly $400 million.

Commentary:
So that's the state of the NCTA projects going into the upcoming NC budget debate and negotiations. What alarms me is the nearly ballpark numbers for the costs to build these projects.

Let's throw the politics out here, how could a legislator support and allocate funding to toll projects without a more specific funding number. For example, the costs of the Garden Parkway runs from $745 million to $1.6 billion. That's nearly a 1 billion (with a b) range of where the actual cost for the project could be. The same for the Cape Fear Skyway. Throw in questioning of the lower design standards and it sure looks like no one knows what we're in for.

Many of these highways are good projects. With the exception of the pointless I-74 proposal and not knowing enough on the impacts the Mid-Currituck Bridge would have on the Outer Banks, I support the idea of these projects being tolled.

However, with the inability to pinpoint the cost to build specific project and what appears to be incompetence at the NCTA. I can not support these projects as they are being managed and designed now. Maybe a 'NO' from the General Assembly will wake up the NCTA to get their act together and come to the legislature with much more solid numbers next year.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Porter-Parsonsfield Covered Bridge - Maine

  Spanning over the Ossipee River on the border between Porter in Oxford County, Maine and Parsonsfield in York County, Maine is the 152 foot long Porter-Parsonsfield Covered Bridge. The Porter-Parsonsfield Bridge is built in a Paddleford truss design, which is commonly found among covered bridges in the New England states. The covered bridge is the third bridge located at this site, with the first two bridges built in 1800 and 1808. However, there seems to be some dispute for when the covered bridge was built. There is a plaque on the bridge that states that the bridge may have been built in 1876, but in my research, I have found that this bridge may have been built in 1859 instead. That may check out since a number of covered bridges in northern New England were built or replaced around 1859 after a really icy winter. The year that the Porter-Parsonsfield Covered Bridge was built was not the only controversy surrounding its construction. There was a dispute over building and maintain

Route 75 Tunnel - Ironton, Ohio

In the Ohio River community of Ironton, Ohio, there is a former road tunnel that has a haunted legend to it. This tunnel was formerly numbered OH 75 (hence the name Route 75 Tunnel), which was renumbered as OH 93 due to I-75 being built in the state. Built in 1866, it is 165 feet long and once served as the northern entrance into Ironton, originally for horses and buggies and later for cars. As the tunnel predated the motor vehicle era, it was too narrow for cars to be traveling in both directions. But once US 52 was built in the area, OH 93 was realigned to go around the tunnel instead of through the tunnel, so the tunnel was closed to traffic in 1960. The legend of the haunted tunnel states that since there were so many accidents that took place inside the tunnel's narrow walls, the tunnel was cursed. The haunted legend states that there was an accident between a tanker truck and a school bus coming home after a high school football game on a cold, foggy Halloween night in 1

US Route 299 and modern California State Route 299

US Route 299 connected US Route 101 near Arcata of Humboldt County east across the northern mountain ranges of California to US Route 395 in Alturas of Modoc County.  US Route 299 was the longest child route of US Route 99 and is the only major east/west highway across the northern counties of California.  US Route 299 was conceptualized as the earliest iteration of what is known as the Winnemucca-to-the-Sea Highway.  The legacy of US Route 299 lives on today in the form of the 307 mile long California State Route 299.   Featured as the cover of this blog is the interchange of US Route 101 and US Route 299 north of Arcata which was completed as a segment of the Burns Freeway during 1956.   Part 1; the history of US Route 299 and California State Route 299 The development of the State Highways which comprised US Route 299 ("US 299") and later California State Route 299 ("CA 299") began with 1903 Legislative Chapter 366 which defined the general corridor of the Trinit