Local News

DOT Officials Look At Viaducts To Solve Traffic Congestion

Posted June 27, 2002

— Could a raised roadway lower traffic trouble on Interstate 40? The state Department of Transportation thinks it might work, and a consultant is already working on a design.

Lyndo Tippett, North Carolina's transportation secretary, wants to try elevated roadways known as viaducts in the Triangle.

"It's a new concept. It may work. It may not, but we'll see," he said.

At $30 million a mile, the viaducts are twice as expensive as traditional lanes, but the cost would be roughly the same as putting high-occupancy vehicle lanes down the I-40 median.

The viaducts would be a tough sell in tough budgetary times, but with the mess the state has now, Tippett has a message for the skeptics.

"Progress comes from non-skeptics," he said.

Austin, Texas, currently uses viaducts. Tippett said he wants to run the viaduct lanes along I-40 from Wade Avenue in Wake County to Highway 54 in Durham County.

The lanes would be limited to high-occupancy vehicles, and drivers passing through the area who do not need to exit along the 15-mile stretch.


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