Next big I-440 project tentatively planned for 2018

Posted November 10, 2014
Updated November 17, 2014

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— The North Carolina Department of Transportation is planning $92 million in improvements along a 3.5-mile stretch of Interstate 440 in Wake County to help alleviate traffic troubles caused by a bottleneck during busy commute times.

The state has scheduled a public meeting from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday at Method Community Center (Pioneer Building), at 514 Method Road, to present its plans to expand I-440 – from just south of Walnut Street in Cary to north of Wade Avenue in Raleigh – from two lanes in each direction to three lanes.

Beginning in 2018, bridges will also be replaced, the road will be resurfaced and interchanges will be changed on the section.

DOT spokesman Steve Abbott said the stretch was the first portion of I-440 completed in the 1960s and was not designed to handle the approximately 80,000 vehicles that travel on it daily.

"You've got to remember that when it was built, Raleigh was much a much smaller community," he said. "Traffic impact is going to get bigger and bigger and bigger."

Abbott said the DOT plans to keep traffic delays to a minimum when work begins. That will be after it completes work on its Fortify project – an initiative currently underway to improve an 11.5-mile stretch of I-440.

"The goal is to maintain two lanes of traffic through the construction zone the whole time," he said. "Except for nights and weekends – there might be some lane closures."


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  • Bill Mooney Nov 12, 2014
    user avatar

    More big government. Why aren't these toll roads?

  • Wil Bristow Nov 12, 2014
    user avatar

    So they are gonna wait till 2018 ot do the project which by that time will be even worse. They are planning for traffic now and not traffic in the future. This is the ongoing problem with infrastructure in much of the nation... it plan for what we have this day not for the future and its pathetic.

  • miseem Nov 12, 2014

    As most of the people posting here say, it's amazing that the oldest and most outdated section of the beltline has escaped any attention from the NCDOT, or any major push from Raleigh, Cary and Wake county over the last 30 years. Particularly considering all of the expansion and widening of the rest of 440 during that time. And although light rail and buses will help lower the increase in vehicle traffic down the road, traffic volume will continue to increase on a section of road already way over capacity. Don't expect light rail or more buses to actually reduce current traffic. And if subways ever become a practical alternative in this area, it will not be in the lifetime of anyone reading this article.

  • Grand Union Nov 12, 2014

    With luck they will also fix the weird way you have to go to get into Crossroads Mall from the north.

  • wolfpack317 Nov 12, 2014

    This spot is hell in the 5pm traffic. Wade to I-40 is hell in the 8am traffic. Glad they're finally working to fix at least one.

  • PanthersFan45 Nov 12, 2014

    I use that stretch of I440 every morning from the north side of the beltline to the Hillsborough street exit (54 to Cary) and then proceed past the fairgrounds. Its not bad if I leave by 6AM. I use the Wade avenure exit from I40 around PNC arena to get on the beltline on my way home. I tend to avoid that stretch.

  • Pseudonym Nov 11, 2014

    View quoted thread

    I second that sentiment!

  • John Young Nov 11, 2014
    user avatar

    leave for work at 6:30 or 7:00 and it is smooth sailing.

  • beerncheesefries Nov 11, 2014

    i only hope they install lights too

  • tri123 Nov 11, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Yup. And increased credits for off-peak and work-from-home. At some point we need to stop subsidizing rush hours in cars.