Charlotte and Mecklenburg County transportation projects were awarded six of the seven highest scores for statewide projects as N.C. Department of Transportation updates its State Transportation Improvement Plan.
Craven County’s highest-scoring new transportation project is a railroad crossing improvement at U.S. 70, with construction penciled in to begin in 2028. It scored higher than a Havelock Bypass, construction of which is scheduled to begin in 2020.
In scoring transportation projects, 40 percent of the funding goes to statewide projects, and 30 percent each for regional and division priorities. The state’s seven highest-ranking highway projects are, in order:
- Build 4th runway at Charlotte Douglas International Airport, Mecklenburg County, $500,000 – Score: 99.64
- Improve the intersection of I-485 and I-85, Mecklenburg County, $11 million – Score: 90.25
- Build ramp meters at 13 intersections on I-77 in Charlotte, Mecklenburg County, $2.8 million – Score: 90.21
- New aircraft parking and taxi lane at Charlotte Douglas International Airport. Mecklenburg County. Cost: $500,000 – Score: 90.05
- New taxiway at Piedmont Triad International Airport, Guilford County, $500,000 – Score: 89.64
- Create diverging diamond interchange at I-85 and W.T. Harris Boulevard, Mecklenburg County, $20.5 million – Score: 89.47
- Build toll lanes on I-77 from Uptown Charlotte to the S.C. state line, Mecklenburg County, $551 million – Score: 89.36
The full list of projects is here, but here are projects in Craven County or that could be of interest to local motorists:
- Highway-rail crossing improvement. Craven County. Construction of grade separations at U.S. 70 Eastbound (Crossing # 722 672A) and U.S. 70 Westbound (Crossing # 949 747C) and closure of existing at grade crossings near Newport. Score 77.02. Cost $14,350,000. Construction FY 2028
- Improve Interchange. Craven County. Improve Glenburnie Road interchange at U.S. 70. Score 75.74. Cost $10,800,000. Construction FY 2029
- Havelock Bypass. Craven County. U.S. 70 Thurman Road Havelock Bypass Upgrade Roadway to Freeway and Construct Service Roads. Upgrade Arterial to Freeway/Expressway 6.88 miles. Score 75.25. Cost $131,900,000. Construction FY 2020
- U.S. 70 Expansion. Johnston and Wayne Counties. U.S. 70 West of SR 1229 (Luby Smith Road) East of SR 2314 (Pondfield Road). Improve Existing U.S. 70 to Freeway Standards from Luby Smith Road to Pondfield Road. Upgrade Arterial to Freeway/Expressway 3.44 miles. Score 77.64. Cost $ 62,000,000. Construction FY 2027
- U.S. 70 Bypass. Wayne County. West Terminus, East of SR 1408, West of SR 1229 (Luby Smith Road). Improve Existing U.S. 70 to Freeway Standards from the West End of the U.S. 70 Bypass to the Wayne/Johnston County Line. Upgrade Arterial to Freeway/Expressway 3.45 miles. Score 75.24. Cost $ 62,900,000. Construction FY 2023
Not on the list are U.S. 70 projects including James City Expressway or a Kinston bypass.