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  • Alexia.1 Apr 11, 2012

    Why even build a loop? Do people drive around in circles? One would think that spokes out of Raleigh would make more sense, anyway. Anyway... loop... quite symbolic.

  • FarmerDoug Apr 11, 2012

    More whiny Yankees posting again. You left noise and traffic up north, don't mess up the quiet South. Our voices and votes will pacify the growth, noise, and traffic towards the "CARY's" (Concentrated Areas of Relocated Yankees). Keep grippin', we'll acclimate with y'all like y'all aren't.

  • GK N.Ral Apr 11, 2012

    Garner wants their cake and to eat it also. Good for the feds. If Garner wants to be in our world, they will have to come up with the money.

  • Nope Apr 11, 2012

    "Give it up y'all, Garner's where you really would like to be."

    Now that's funny!!!

  • 59cruisers Apr 11, 2012

    While it seemed very unlikely that the red route could ever be built, just having it on the table completely shut down all residential real estate and business development. Why would anyone invest in a town that is slated to have a large portion of it demolished, and the remainder blighted by a highway? No other town in the triangle has been subject to this. In each section, alternative routes were proposed to appease the feds. In each case, they were removed within months. That's what was supposed to happen with the red route, but the federal government has blocked it. What I don't understand is why that original study did not count. The route was laid out, and the costs were tallied for demolishing Garner. It quickly became apparent that it was completely impractical route. That's where the feds stepped in and said you need to have a multi-year study. This makes no sense. Someone in the federal government has a ax to grind against the town of Garner.

  • Rebelyell Apr 10, 2012

    We need a subway system not toll roads. I would love to take a train from Oxford to work in Raleigh.
    My "work" is kicking in your back doors and loading up some goodies.

  • 3forme Apr 10, 2012

    Bendal..if it was going thru your house you might feel a little different..

  • mcfly Apr 10, 2012

    For anyone who is interested in knowing a factual history/evolution of the section of 540 known as the Southern Wake Expressway, please turn your attention to the following NCDOT website:

    Scroll down towards the bottom and you'll find a trove of .pdf files that are large but very informative. I would direct your attention to one in particular:

    This particular .pdf contains maps of the section stretching from US401 to I40 in southern Wake County. Page 2 of 29 clearly shows that the drawn route as filed in March/1997 is the one known as the Orange Route.

    I also find of particular interest (b/c I was unaware how far back the planning went) that the intent, as drawn and submitted in March/1997, of this section of 540 was to meet the US70 Bypass at I40... exactly were the US70 Bypass sits today.

  • Bendal1 Apr 10, 2012

    annbyrd, if it's clear to everyone that it's nothing but a paper alternate, why did some fearful and ignorant property owners put the state in a bind, by getting the legislature to kill the alternate? It's a non-viable alternative; NCTA and the Feds know this, they've known it from the start. It's a paper alternative to satisfy NEPA and agency requirements, nothing more. Apparently some property owners and Garner officials thought they could just legislate NEPA away, and now everyone's finding that has consequences.

    So, here's what needs to happen next. The legislature needs to rescind their ban on studying the Red route, which frees up Federal money to keep funding this study. It won't be selected; they know it, NCTA knows it, and the agencies know it. Maybe Garner can convince the nervous Nellies afraid that they're right and the experts are wrong, but I kind of doubt it.

  • superman Apr 10, 2012

    Wish we had a new road but I dont want it too close or too far from my house. Maybe they can demolish your house. We all want it but then we dont want it to affect us. I am special and you are not. How do you think they can build a road without affecting people?

  • annbyrd12 Apr 10, 2012

    Dear Tux ~ And your point is? Yes, we are a little bit country, but we like it here. Garner is a great place for families. My definition of "armpit" would be sitting in rush hour traffic in North Raleigh. :)

  • annbyrd12 Apr 10, 2012

    Bendal1~ get your facts straight! Those of us who live in Garner have known for decades where the 540 route was to be. We have made a point of leaving the land undeveloped. The Red Route truly does decimate our small town. It was such a ridiculous proposal that we knew it was only to fulfill the requirements for the environmental study. Then citizens became fearful that it might really happen and the state legislators seemed to feel the same. My husband works for Air Quality and would prefer that none of 540 had been built! We just infill with more development and create more pollution. The short-sightedness here is our refusal to consider mass transit.

  • Frank Downtown Apr 10, 2012

    Oh come on. Include it in the study so you can get the money then go for the route that is the farthest from neighborhoods, otherwise, by the time it gets built SE wake county will be full of neighborhoods!

  • rand321 Apr 10, 2012

    If Garner is afraid that a proposed highway might chase off business, imagine the impact of long communtes and bumper to bumper traffic for their employees, more expensive shipping and receiving of goods or sky high tolls should NC have to fund all of the highway costs.

    Garner should at least help to determine other alternate routes to help in their economic development. Sounds like the Garner crowd is short sighted yet again in their thinking or a few big political donors were trying to hold out for more funding for selling their land or to sell land along one of the other routes.

    Politics is all local!

  • dlnorri Apr 10, 2012

    Bendal, the route DOT planned 20 years ago was not the red route. The planned and approved route is south of Garner, most all the right-of-way has already been purchased. the red route was one of several alternatives that showed up after the Turnpike athority was created. (see my earlier post to understand why they are doing this).

  • floydthebarber Apr 10, 2012

    I'm glad these decisions are not being made in a rushed matter- splitting a community or plowing through scenic parts of the county both make little sense. If NC wants this road that bad, then we should fund the studies.

  • Bendal1 Apr 10, 2012

    NCDOT did plan for the southern outer loop route; that was the "red route" that got killed by the legislature. The corridor was known by Garner at least 20 years ago; I know the engineer who drew out the corridor and met with the town officials back then, but they allowed development to grow up around the corridor anyway.

    Then, with the new merger process rules in effect basically giving the environmental agencies veto power on various corridors and designs, NCDOT and NCTA are required to study multiple alternatives even if one route has a protected corridor, or is completely unacceptable to the citizens. So yes, the state did plan ahead, it's the town officials who allowed the development, and environmental rule changes that has created this situation, not the DOT.

  • Titus Pullo Apr 10, 2012

    "Maybe our Congressional delegation can help straighten out the loonacy called Washington!"

    They are part of the problem.

  • Lone Voice in the Wilderness Apr 10, 2012

    Failing to plan for the future is what got us into this mess right now. Interstates and other highways need to be planned for decades to come.

    Eisenhower, a Republican by the way, started the Interstate system in 1956. According to Wikipedia, the original plan wasn't "finished" until 1992.

    Imagine if Raleigh had planned for I-440 better back when it was first being built--starting off with 3 or 4 lanes all the way around even though it had very little traffic back in the day.

    I wonder if America could ever build anything like the Interstate system today. With our current level of distrust with each other and the federal government, I don't think we can ever pull of a great achievement for a long time.

    America has gone down this road before. I just hope we snap out of it sometime soon.

  • SaveEnergyMan Apr 10, 2012

    The red route was proposed as an outrageous path to keep the original route as the primary. Who in their right mind runs the route through a populated area when there are other paths that are much less occupied. It would be much more expensive and absolutely disruptive to a growing community. After all, they built the US-70 bypass after finding these same mussels.

    The feds called the state on their bluff and now is pushing the state to go through with it or lose our tax money. This is where Hagan, Burr, Price, and Elmers need to go to the Dept of Transportation and remind them that they all work for the people and that Congressional funding for them is more forthcoming when they stop playing games.

  • Come On_Seriously Apr 10, 2012

    You've missed one point Grimreaper- We are all owners of the 'Company Store' and I'd just as soon have the NC storefront remodeled rather than the one in Alaska or Missouri.

    Do you really expect people to believe that all of 'Kalifornia' - Silicon Valley, Hollywood, Napa Valley, etc. and the multitude of productive businesses including more Fortune 500 companies than any other state - constitutes 'an extension of the federal government...totally dependent on handouts?' That is quite the conservative dream and not rooted in reality.

  • wral mods blow close my account Apr 10, 2012

    Toll the north side to pay for the south side - LOL

  • cwood3 Apr 10, 2012

    Excuse me-the "red route" is the most intrusive ofall the options. This is just another example of our federal government being out of touch with reality.

    Because of this, those of us south and east will be let out in the cold-again!! Maybe our Congressional delegation can help straighten out the loonacy called Washington!

  • The Deadhead Apr 10, 2012

    Flow Easy- The NCGA has a GOP majority. However, Senate Bill 165 was NOT GOP-led. Look at the votes. Furthermore, this bill had two sponsors: Richard Stevens (GOP) and Dan Blue (DEM), obviously senators representing the red route (Districts 14 & 17) area of Wake County. This bill flew through the GA faster than anything I can remember. It would have and did take more than a GOP-led GA to get this through this fast, a remarkable 18 days from the time the bill was filed to law. The gov signed it.

  • davidk_at_unc Apr 10, 2012

    "And it's NOT the feds money, it's OUR money!" -- jeffdewitt

    And if this project isn't approved, YOUR MONEY will be spend in SOMEBODY ELSE'S STATE!

  • grimreaper Apr 10, 2012

    The less federal money you take the better off you state is in the long run. Just look at Kalifornia...they are essentially an extension of the federal government...totally dependent on handouts...totally...the goal should always be to use as little federal money as possible and when you do use that money only for always has strings attached...the high speed rail is a good example...perpetual millions in future costs by the state for only a few million up front from the federal government...we need a wean and lean approach to federal monies...wean yourself off of it and only use it when it really, really makes sense for a critical undertaking...else you will be owned by the company store...

  • Tcheuchter Apr 10, 2012

    "The reason for the red route is that after many hours of searching 6 or 12 endangered mussels or something was found."

    And you think killing them is OK? how many species should we allow to survive? just us?

  • Nancy Apr 10, 2012

    Hey, what difference does it make anyway, whether we get fed money, after all, once NC takes their section of I-95 to a toll road, they lose those federal dollars for that stretch too.

    Seems they want to go it alone anyway.

  • Come On_Seriously Apr 10, 2012

    While I appreciate your moniker, and understand that most Ds voted the same- how is it not gop-led?

  • The Deadhead Apr 10, 2012

    Flow Easy sez ". . .Unfortunately, our gop-led GA (and their 'no handout' backers)have short-sightedly rushed to outlaw any possibility of a particular route. ."

    Huh? We are talking about Senate Bill 165 (SL 2011-7) right? Blame the GOP? All 50 members of the Senate voted for it, and 115 House members voted for it, AND the governor was "quick" to sign it into law. Nice try.


  • 59cruisers Apr 10, 2012

    The new law does not remove all alternative routes. It only prevents the DOT from considering any routes north of the originally planned route. All they have to do is lay out a route south of the original route for consideration.

  • The Fox Apr 10, 2012

    [But hey, I'd guess that you'd rather those folks live on handouts I guess.]For a billion dollars you could buy a ferry for each residence/family out there on the island.

  • 1UNC Apr 10, 2012

    Some of the money to build the existing toll road came from the feds. The rest the stae got from selling bonds. The purpose of the toll is to collect the money to repay the bonds so its sort of paying for the road thats been built, not for future roads. And, once the bonds have been paid the tolls are supposed to end. We'll see if they ever end.

  • RichardE Apr 10, 2012

    They did. It's called the billion dollar Bonner Bridge to nowhere.

    Keeping Oregon Inlet free of debris and allowing traffic southward brings in nearly a billion dollars dollars in revenue annually from the fishing and tourist income. But hey, I'd guess that you'd rather those folks live on handouts I guess.

  • ferdjr Apr 10, 2012

    I guess a little refreher info is in order. For nearly 20 years a route has been defined by ncdot. People living along this route have been resticted from building etc. The reason for the red route is that after many hours of searching 6 or 12 endangered mussels or something was found. So alterative routes had to be studied no matter the the cost. The red route will take nearly 600 homes some 3-4 years old. Some industries have to move. Some industrial development has already been lost. Also the decision will not be made until 2014 or later so those with homes in the effected area have to cool it and not make any improvements or if you have to sell lots of luck

  • jeffdewitt Apr 10, 2012

    Fox, that's just what the Red Route is, a makework plan that served no other purpose than to please the feds.

    And it's NOT the feds money, it's OUR money!

  • Come On_Seriously Apr 10, 2012

    People don't seem to realize that a project, by law, has to consider more than one alternative in order to meet criteria that allow federal funds to be used. Otherwise, the politicians or DOT planners could just force it through one area that they personaly like- regardless of the impact to homes, businesses, intersecting and nearby traffic flow, water resources, etc. The DOT is responding to traffic needs of an area that is outgrowing its infrastructure.

    Sometimes the alternate route (like the red route) is obviously inferior due to the best practical placement of it. Unfortunately, our gop-led GA (and their 'no handout' backers)have short-sightedly rushed to outlaw any possibility of a particular route and therefore eliminated the project entirely. Federal assistance funding is not a handout- you've already paid your tax money into it. You'd rather they use your money to fund a bridge (ie infrastructure and jobs) in Minnesota?

  • RichardE Apr 10, 2012

    A subway from Oxford to Raleigh? LOL!!!! When it comes to wasting money, you sure do aim high. Bravo!!!!

    What about a monorail? It's far cheaper to build and faster to implement than a subway. -Just a thought.

  • leo-nc Apr 10, 2012

    Just kill it now. It's a waste of time the current toll road gets almost no traffic.

  • RichardE Apr 10, 2012

    What about moving the thing in a more southerly route towards Fuquay Varina? Or at least considering it?

  • pooodaddy Apr 10, 2012

    Mmmmmm did someone say Subway?

  • RAA0013 Apr 10, 2012

    I thought the reason there are now tolls on 540 was to pay for the rest of the 540 loop. Was that to be in addition to what the feds are giving us? Or is the state double dipping?

  • The Fox Apr 10, 2012

    [Projects like this bring that money back to NC instead of the feds spending it on some crazy bridge to nowhere in Alaska.]They did. It's called the billion dollar Bonner Bridge to no where.

  • The Fox Apr 10, 2012

    The corridor has already been established and parts purchased. Just pick another route to study, wink wink, any route and be done with it. Feds money, Feds rules.

  • KermitDFrog Apr 10, 2012

    I thought the road was built with bond/private money - hence the toll. Now we are learning that the FEDs have been subsidizing the road?!?! We even have two "540" signs - one to indicate the "free" section and one to indicate the "toll" section.

  • OGE Apr 10, 2012

    We need a subway system not toll roads. I would love to take a train from Oxford to work in Raleigh.

    There is a great relatively unused RR track that goes from Zebulon to Wendell to Knightdale and finally to Raleigh. The bus they have is great but I would not get home until 8 or 9 pm.

  • Riddickfield Apr 10, 2012

    A subway from Oxford to Raleigh? LOL!!!! When it comes to wasting money, you sure do aim high. Bravo!!!!

  • jaredg Apr 10, 2012

    "Hello? Anyone there? This is no 'hangout'. We pay 18 cents/gallon federal gas tax. Projects like this bring that money back to NC instead of the feds spending it on some crazy bridge to nowhere in Alaska"

    by that reasoning since we all pay Federal Income tax we should all be sitting on our rear end watching The View waiting for the next government handout.

  • FarmerDoug Apr 10, 2012

    Boo hoo! The LAST little small town in the Triangle doesn't want any part of elevated overpasses, tolls, and destroyed neighborhoods......only to he'p a few dodos and their toll bidness. Garner's got its niche, and doesn't want 4 WalMarts, BestBuys, et al, like the rest of North Philadelphia, oops, I mean North Raleigh.

    Give it up y'all, Garner's where you really would like to be.

  • 7Degrees Apr 10, 2012

    Good! Just another example of government extortion without regard to the impacts to the taxpayers.

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