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DOT scraps plans for Hillsborough bypass

Posted February 5, 2010

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— The state Department of Transportation this week decided to discontinue plans to build a bypass around Hillsborough because of local opposition.

The $45 million project would have extended Elizabeth Brady Road from the intersection of N.C. Highway 86 with U.S. Highway 70 Business to north of the U.S. 70 Highway Bypass at the intersection of St. Mary’s Road in Hillsborough. The 3-mile extension was proposed to reduce traffic congestion on Churton Street in the Hillsborough central business district.

Residents, officials from Hillsborough, Orange County and the Durham-Carrboro-Chapel Hill Metropolitan Planning Organization all spoke against the plan.


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  • kwazykat Feb 5, 2010

    My count of light CYCLES was in reference to sitting in 'line' to get through one intersection - for a total of three cycles from one traffic signal - not how many traffic lights are located in town - silly you! [For example: Sometimes getting from the 70A light through the Margaret Lane light can take three cycles of the Margaret Lane light - to which I comment "No problem!" whilst others whine and cry about it!] :D

  • olsaltydog Feb 5, 2010

    timothycapwell, that money is gone mostly to Charlotte to help fund their bypass.

    As for business its moving out, all there is are non tax producing government buildings and those the County is purchasing and a few restaurants that serve the town folks. Oh don't forget that run down and yet to fall down Colonial Inn that what his name General Corn something stayed in.

  • DontLikeTheSocialistObama Feb 5, 2010

    This is a case of the nimby's who opposed any kind of highway construction using a dirt track that's been long forgotten as an excuse to kill a needed highway project.

  • lowe0008 Feb 5, 2010

    there are four light cycles

  • timothycapwell Feb 5, 2010

    Why didn't they listen to the residents in Asheville for the proposed I-26/I-40 project? Inconsistent to say the least!

    Maybe some of that proposed money can go to finishing I-540. (Yeah, I laughed, too!)

  • kwazykat Feb 5, 2010

    This decision is a huge blessing for many reasons. First of all, the amount of history that would have been destroyed, along with the number of misplaced homeowners/residents would have been a sickening loss. I have lived in HB four decades and my feeling is: "So what if I have to wait three little light cycles to move through an intersection... big deal." I have always found a place to park in the Historic District. Even on a busy weekend evening for a supper date at one of the awesome local establishments. Patience is all one needs to navigate through HB. IF you want to BYPASS the Historic District, there are numerous ways to do so. Smart people KNOW how to 'bypass' Churton Street. If Churton Street is busy due to commerce, that is an awesome issue. If people are in "traffic" and whining about it, then I would suggest to them to become part of the smart-set and devise their own personal 'bypass' around town. It is super easy to do - and I promise, it is not rocket-science!

  • 3779LRRP Feb 5, 2010

    Good deal. There has been a lot of work done to clear the old racetrack plot. Some of the buildings have been restored reminiscent of 1948 through 1968 when the track operated. Miles of walking trails have been constructed around the site. The whole backstretch of the old track runs parallel to the Eno River. Great place to take the family and the dog for a walk.

  • withnailharrison Feb 5, 2010

    A bypass around a town is actually bad for downtown city center business, because it "bypasses" traffic around the center. Bypasses have killed downtown cores all over the country. Parking and driving may be inconvenient because of the lack of a bypass, but the presence of foot traffic and potential customers is a blessing to any business downtown.

  • Frank Downtown Feb 5, 2010

    Strange that they would not want to ease traffic in the downtown are. It will only get worse as more people move the but the lack of the by pass will also mean less business will move there to provide jobs.

  • Capt Mercury Feb 5, 2010

    So let me get this straight, traffic in downtown Hillsborough will continue to be clogged indefinitely because we can't build a road around it that doesn't cross an old dirt racetrack? Are there no alternate routes?

    Seems like the NC DOT just said "take it or leave it" and the local answer was "leave it". Nothing accomplished. Great.