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Old 12-15-2017, 06:16 AM
 
Location: Danville, VA
4,613 posts, read 3,029,008 times
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This was the most recent article I could find (from this past August) on a new crossing. I agree with MrBojangles that connecting I-140 to Shipyard Blvd would be the way to go since it would give truck traffic on US-74, US-17, and I-40 easy access going to and from the Port without having to go through the middle of Wilmington.

Cape Fear crossing choices narrowed - News - Wilmington Star News - Wilmington, NC

Quote:
Two alternatives for a potential third crossing of the Cape Fear River were removed from consideration Wednesday by the Wilmington Metropolitan Planning Organization.

The crossings would have seen Independence Boulevard connect to Route 17. They would have crossed the Cape Fear River at the southernmost of four potential points, but would have crossed through the center of the town of Leland.

Mike Kozlosky, executive director of the WMPO, said a team of state officials, including from the N.C. Department of Transportation, asked if the WMPO board would consider crossing the two crossings off the list.

WMPO board members from Brunswick County enthusiastically supported removing the alternatives.

“Development is happening there and it’s not going to stop,” said Leland Mayor Pro Tem Pat Batleman. “By the time these things finally ever get built, you’re going to have thousands of relocations (of homes).”

The board has stated that it prefers two options connecting I-140 and skirting the southern parts of Leland. One would cross the river just south of Eagles Island and connect to Shipyard Boulevard, while the other would cross at the southernmost proposed crossing and connect to Independence Boulevard.

The river currently has two crossings, the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge, which was built in 1969, and the Isabel Holmes Bridge, which was built in 1979 to replace a two-lane bridge.

A third crossing or a replacement for the 48-year-old Cape Fear Memorial Bridge is something local officials have called for frequently, and for years. The DOT, however, has not included replacing the bridge in its long-range transportation plans.

The ideas have a long history, stretching back to the now-scrapped Cape Fear Skyway. Part of the hold up has been potential costs of $1 billion or more and whether the new crossings would be subject to tolls.
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Old 12-15-2017, 07:36 AM
 
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Another factor that will no doubt delay this project, potentially for decades, is the fact that existing Cape Fear Memorial Bridge is near the end of its expected lifetime and will need to be replaced before the third crossing is built. Thats two huge dollar projects competing for money.
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Old 12-15-2017, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Danville, VA
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https://apps.ncdot.gov/newsreleases/...s.aspx?r=14690

Quote:
Friday morning marked a major milestone for the City of Wilmington and surrounding areas as local legislators and state transportation officials gathered to cut a ceremonial ribbon for the Interstate-140/Wilmington Bypass.

The project is in its final phase of construction, with the N.C. Department of Transportation hoping to open the last section of the highway by the end of the month. The nearly eight-mile stretch of highway connects to the section that is already open in Brunswick and New Hanover counties, capping off a $411-million project.

“One of the things we’re working on at the Department is getting projects completed faster,” said Department of Transportation Chief Engineer Tim Little. “The opening of this stretch of highway will mark the completion of the entire 20-mile bypass and the culmination of years of hard work by hundreds of people.”

In addition to the chief engineer, also taking part in the ceremony were N.C. State Senator Bill Rabon, N.C. State Representative Frank Iler and NCDOT Division Engineer Karen Collette.

The bypass includes the construction of 19 new bridges, two of which are more than a mile long.

“For the first time, you’ll be able to go around Wilmington instead of having to go straight through downtown,” Little said. “Traffic congestion on the causeway will also be improved.”

Although the bypass will soon be open to traffic, drivers will still see lane closures through the spring of 2018 as final touches on the highway are made. Once completed, residents, visitors and area businesses are all expected to benefit from the greater mobility provided by the bypass.
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Old 12-15-2017, 06:28 PM
 
Location: Danville, VA
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For those interested:

https://www.ncdot.gov/projects/capefear/
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Old 12-16-2017, 06:53 AM
 
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Angry Open...well, NOT YET

Ribbon-cutting was yesterday, but the road is not actually open yet. Still needs signing to be finished and a few other things. But they were able to "say" it's "open". Gotta love politics. And when it does "open", there will be intermittent lane closures until next Spring as more work is done. This will be great for me once it's actually open. I live in Compass Pointe and have to go to Jacksonville a lot. Can't wait to hop on 140 and shoot right up to 17 on the other side of Wilmington
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Old 12-18-2017, 08:44 PM
 
378 posts, read 252,703 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LM117 View Post
Didn't know it would cost that much money to build... It might be the bridges that are making the prices insane. I know the Wilmington bypass would ease traffic off of the connector that goes to downtown, but I also don't see a way how to upgrade that existing interchange to a free flow. It's probably not feasible anyway because of all the development that's around.

I-20 was supposed to run downtown and I-140 part of the cape fear crossing project. I would be shocked if they made a freeway that connects to the beaches... I did see a link saying they would try to run I-40 to the shore, but it's not feasible with all the development. "and it's also not proposed"

Here's the link

http://www.gribblenation.com/ncpics/history/i40.html

Last edited by Slay The Great; 12-18-2017 at 08:57 PM..
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Old 12-19-2017, 01:59 PM
 
2,401 posts, read 3,356,116 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC1960 View Post
Another factor that will no doubt delay this project, potentially for decades, is the fact that existing Cape Fear Memorial Bridge is near the end of its expected lifetime and will need to be replaced before the third crossing is built. Thats two huge dollar projects competing for money.
Competing for the money?

A bridge is a necessity. If you don't have it, you cant get across...its not like a road that has other alternatives. It doesnt matter what the folks in Raleigh want to say about the cost of a bridge, it's entirely its own animal. A beltline is a WANT, not a Need. A Bridge is a Need.

Obviously when you think about that the Holmes bridge can handle downtown traffic the plan should be...

1) Expedite the interchange improvements on the TIP at the 421/MLK intersection to allow traffic to flow more freely east/west and into northern downtown...now that the Causeway is done.

2) Move forward with the Southern crossing, which I'm sure will take 10 years or so to build.

3) As soon as it opens, close the CF Memorial and replace it...take another ten years if you want.

This isnt about how much money it costs, this is about the plan for replacing bridges and also handling traffic.
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Old 12-19-2017, 02:09 PM
 
6,800 posts, read 4,435,590 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HP91 View Post
Competing for the money?

A bridge is a necessity. If you don't have it, you cant get across...its not like a road that has other alternatives. It doesnt matter what the folks in Raleigh want to say about the cost of a bridge, it's entirely its own animal. A beltline is a WANT, not a Need. A Bridge is a Need.

Obviously when you think about that the Holmes bridge can handle downtown traffic the plan should be...

1) Expedite the interchange improvements on the TIP at the 421/MLK intersection to allow traffic to flow more freely east/west and into northern downtown...now that the Causeway is done.

2) Move forward with the Southern crossing, which I'm sure will take 10 years or so to build.

3) As soon as it opens, close the CF Memorial and replace it...take another ten years if you want.

This isnt about how much money it costs, this is about the plan for replacing bridges and also handling traffic.
I don't think you understand how transportation improvements are funded in NC. Its always about what the "folks in Raleigh" (i.e. the General Assembly) have to say, AND its always about the money. Always. There are more transportation projects that there is money.

Just look at the Bonner Bridge on the Outer Banks. It literally had to start falling down before the GA ponied up for a replacement. And there is no redundancy there like there is in Wilmington. It will be decades before the Cape Fear Crossing Bridge is built.
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Old 12-19-2017, 03:00 PM
 
Location: Danville, VA
4,613 posts, read 3,029,008 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HP91 View Post
2) Move forward with the Southern crossing, which I'm sure will take 10 years or so to build.

3) As soon as it opens, close the CF Memorial and replace it...take another ten years if you want.
There's no way NCDOT is going to build the new crossing before replacing the CF Memorial Bridge or at least giving it a major rehab. That bridge is connected to a major trucking corridor. They can't afford to let it fall apart, at which point traffic would be a disaster.

As for another poster upthread saying that I-20 was supposed to go Wilmington, that is flat out false. It was a proposal made by former governor Mike Easley back in the early 2000's, to which South Carolina responded in no uncertain terms that they will NOT extend I-20 from Florence.
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Old 12-19-2017, 05:18 PM
 
Location: Danville, VA
4,613 posts, read 3,029,008 times
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The last section of I-140 has opened to traffic today.

I-140 Wilmington Bypass officially open to traffic - WECT TV6: News and Weather for Wilmington, NC; WECT.com - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Quote:
After 17 years of planning and construction, the I-140/Wilmington Bypass is officially open.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on the road Friday with state senators and representatives in attendance.

NC Department of Transportation officials said at that time the bypass opening was delayed by wet weather that slowed construction.

The newest section of road connects US 74/76 near Leland up to the Highway 17/421 interchange near New Hanover County. Occasional lane closures are expected as crews wrap up work on the bypass in the next few months.
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