Local News

Raleigh Earns Distinction For Its Bumpy Roads

Posted May 30, 2003

— North Carolina is supposed to be the "Good Road State," cut the Capital city just made the bad road list.

According to a report released Thursday, Raleigh's roads have more potholes, divots and rough spots than roads in several much larger cities.

Capital Boulevard inside the Beltline looks like a minefield. Crews are trying to fix U.S. 1 before one of the road's craters swallows a car.

Now comes

"Cities With the Bumpiest Rides,"

a report by The Road Information Program, a nonprofit highway research organization.

The report claims that 9 percent of roads in the Raleigh area are unacceptable -- meaning in need of repair or potentially causing car repairs.

Raleigh fared worse than Atlanta, Minneapolis, Orlando, Phoenix, Tampa and five other cities.

"You really have to keep an eye out for potholes, for grooves and what-not," said local driver Melissa Embry. "Even on I-40, headed toward Durham. The roads even in that area, with all the construction, are really bad, too. So I'm not surprised a bit about that."

Said local driver Elisa Serrano: "Sometimes when I'm driving, I just notice it, and it really makes me mad, because I think: 'What are they spending that money on?'

"Why can't they fix the roads? It doesn't seem like it's that difficult."

The report says North Carolina needs to pave the way to better roads by doing more pavement patching like the Department of Transportation is doing on U.S. 1 just North of Cary Parkway. But the road patchers say they are doing all they can with what they have.

"It takes funds to do this kind of stuff," said Jerry Linder of the DOT. "We are now changing a lot of the attitudes at DOT about doing more maintenance work. We've got some new Senate bill money that we can use."

The state is shifting funds from building new roads to fixing existing roads. But the shift takes time. So, for now, it's still a bumpy ride.


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