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NCTA Mid-Currituck Bridge Update January 2011

New location roadway, including a proposed bridge over the Currituck Sound, from Currituck County mainland to the Currituck County Outer Banks.

Length
Approximately 7.0 miles

Estimated Cost
Preliminary cost is estimated at $659.2 million. Final costs will be determined during design.

Free alternate route
Existing US 158 across the Wright Memorial Bridge, then NC 12.

Timeline
Draft Environmental Impact Statement Completed
Final Environmental Impact Statement Spring/Summer 2011
Record of Decision Summer/Fall 2011
Project Open to Traffic 2015

Project Update as of January 2011
Recently we have received numerous phone calls and e-mail queries about the status of the Mid-Currituck Bridge project. We hope everyone interested in this project will find this brief status update helpful.

Since the close of the public and agency comment period in June 2010, we have reviewed all of the comments received and moved forward with selecting a Preferred Alternative. The focus of this effort has been on the selection of a Preferred Alternative that includes a Mid-Currituck Bridge. ER2 (widening existing roads only) and the No-Build Alternative, however, remain on the table until a final decision is made.

An important part of this effort has been working with environmental resource and regulatory agencies to resolve key environmental concerns associated with a Mid-Currituck Bridge. This has taken longer than we hoped. Once these concerns are resolved, we will announce a Preferred Alternative and send a notice to everyone on our project mailing list. If a bridge project is selected, we will issue a Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in Spring/Summer 2011, followed by a Record of Decision in Summer/Fall 2011. The project is anticipated to be open to traffic in 2015.

Although no final decision has been made, we are pursuing MCB4/C1 as the Preferred Alternative with refinements to help avoid and minimize natural resource and community impacts. Although not final and subject to change, the Preferred Alternative currently under consideration includes the following characteristics:

• A Mid-Currituck Bridge.

• The C1 or northern bridge ending on the Outer Banks. The ending would be relocated to pass between the currently improved first phase of the Corolla Bay subdivision and the northern end of the Monteray Shores subdivision. This location is currently undeveloped and unimproved. C1, as shown in the Draft EIS, passed though the southern end of the first phase of the Corolla Bay subdivision. This change would reduce impacts both to Corolla Bay and area wetlands. The bridge approach road would be at least 300 feet away from the homes and lots west of NC 12.

• Turning safety improvements at Waterlily Road on US 158. All right and left turning movements would be allowed.

• A toll plaza at US 158 and not in Aydlett.

• No closure of Aydlett Road and no access to the bridge or its approach road in Aydlett.

• Bridging across Maple Swamp as defined in the Draft EIS as Option A.

• A revised NC 12 widening design that would include less four-lane widening than was proposed in the Draft EIS. Widening of NC 12 to four lanes would take place only in the bridge ending area, the Food Lion and TimBuck II commercial area, and the Currituck Clubhouse Drive area. Instead of traffic signals, roundabouts would be used on NC 12 at the bridge ending and at Currituck Clubhouse Drive. Roundabouts would help keep summer weekend traffic moving despite less widening. A traffic signal would continue to be used at Albacore Street. Left turn lanes would be built at intersections in areas that remain two lanes between the bridge ending and Currituck Clubhouse Drive. Marked pedestrian crossings would be built at locations specified by Currituck County in areas where NC 12 is widened.

•To improve hurricane evacuation clearance times, reversing the center turn lane along US 158 on the mainland and north of the Mid-Currituck Bridge. On the Outer Banks, providing three westbound lanes on US 158 from the NC 12/US 158 intersection through the Duck Woods Drive intersection and then merging back to two westbound lanes approximately 750 feet west of this intersection.

Stormwater management and Mid-Currituck Bridge construction techniques that would minimize impacts to Currituck Sound also have been an important part of discussions with the environmental resource and regulatory agencies.

Because no final decision has been made, the items listed above could change. However, substantial changes are not expected if a bridge is selected as the Preferred Alternative.

We hope that this indication of progress and status is helpful. We know many of you will have questions and like more details. We are working on those details. We will provide more detail when the Preferred Alternative is announced and in the Final EIS.

7 comments to NCTA Mid-Currituck Bridge Update January 2011

  • Elizabeth Lindemann

    I remain concerned about the ongoing cost of bridge maintenance as well as cost overuns and toll/cost ratios– the amount of subsidy charged to NC taxpayers for a project that does not add substantial ongoing jobs is at odds with the state and national fiscal agenda.

  • Susie Snead

    Those of us who live here year-round DO NOT want the bridge-no matter where you put it!

  • Lorraine Wenstrom

    When you say less 4 lane widening than was proposed in the draft EIS. I live at 966 N.
    Harbor View with NC 12 behind my
    house. Will this part of NC 12 be widened behind us, since the article only said bridge ending.
    How far exactly do you mean? Please send me an e-mail about
    the widening of NC 12 at Monteray Shores. How would any of our family and tenants cross a 4 lane highway to use our facilities. This is a very
    dangerous curve at N. Harbor View in Corolla.

  • Debbie Hartlove

    NO NO NO NO NO NO!

  • admin

    This is wishful thinking on the NCTA’s part. The environmental agencies are NOT going to lay down over this. For additional information not posted on the Turnpikes web site send an e-mail to midcurrituck@ncturnpike.org.

  • GinnyT

    No bridge. No road widening. Enough is enough. Now is the time to honestly focus on the environment rather than just say you are doing it.

  • June Nathanson

    We don’t need a bridge. For 22 days of the year, we can deal with a little traffic.