Raleigh council opposes proposed 540 expansion route

Posted January 4, 2011

— After an outcry from concerned citizens, the Raleigh City Council agreed Tuesday to ask that a proposed route for the southeastern extension of Interstate 540 be removed from consideration.

The route, known as the Tan Corridor, would run through a rural area between Clayton and Knightdale.

The North Carolina Turnpike Authority proposed the route in September after they were asked to reconsider another route which would have impacted land owned by Wake County and the city of Raleigh.

Opponents of the tan route spoke before the city council on Tuesday, saying the corridor will impact numerous neighborhoods, having a big impact on homes and a church.

“It’s impacting people emotionally, mentally and financially,” neighbor Frann Sarpolus said.

Among the more passionate pleas, Deacon Ronald Penny told the council the proposed route would run right through his 137-year-old congregation.

“Your silence in this matter displaces communities, destroys our church and disrupts our heritage,” Penny said.

Wake citizens oppose proposed I-540 extension route Wake citizens oppose proposed I-540 extension route

The city council agreed to write a letter asking the Turnpike Authority to drop the Tan Corridor from consideration. Wake County Commissioners have already sent a similar letter.

The Southeast Extension will extend the Triangle Expressway – currently under construction in southeast Wake County and part of northeast Johnston County – and complete the loop around Raleigh.

The Turnpike Authority expects to decide on a route by mid-2012, though the ultimate decision won't be made until the end of 2013.

Construction could begin as early as 2018. 


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  • Bendal1 Jan 5, 2011

    Actually, that's how we do it when determining which alternate to go with. If the public clearly opposes a route and it's as viable as the others, we'll drop that one. I had a project in the east part of the state where we had a preferred alternate, held the public hearing, and the opposition was so high for that route that we went with the route the public wanted, even when it had higher environmental impacts.

    The process is operating exactly like it's supposed to, folks.

  • rroadrunner99 Jan 5, 2011

    I think the highway should be put on Government land first and foremost. That should be taken over a private citizen's land I think. The city of Raleigh will be the biggest benefactor of this highway, so let them use the land they own to get the highway, along with other government owned land's.If they don't want it on Government owned land ...then abandon the project, stop it where it is . Save the money, the state could sure use it else where. It seem's noone want's this highway anywhere anyway.

  • andy2 Jan 5, 2011

    It cut right through Wildwood Green in North Raleigh. Those whiners in the propsed section need to quit crying, take the money and move along.

  • ezLikeSundayMorning Jan 5, 2011

    The problem with all projects like this is that they judge public opinion by how loud they are. BTW, I totally support their right to scream their heads off, especially as new routes are proposed. But someone is against every route and its hard to measure opposition objectively. Maybe they should put the top 3 routes on the ballot in November and let people vote, ranking the coices in order of preference using the automatic runoff method.

  • miss Q B Jan 5, 2011

    Thanks for stating the facts and setting it straight.
    After this has been in the works for a couple of decades, they now are deciding to add new possible routes. Our house was purchased 10 years ago & there was not any talk of a major project coming thru our neighborhood. Now that they have decided that don't want to use the gov't land and come thru Clayton, we certainly have the right to protest. It's not called whining, it's called standing up for what you believe in. Unlike some others, I plan to use the voice God gave me!
    I would rather see this highway go somewhere else, not thru my house. It's only logical for someone to protect their home and where they have lived for many years. I hate this has to happen to anyone, but as long as we are able to have a say so - that we will do!

  • raleighite3 Jan 5, 2011

    I cannot defend this tan route, nor some of the comments on here. I've read that property values will skyrocket, people haven't done research, and Garner will be split in half. Please. We're talking about the TAN route. This has nothing to do with splitting Garner. And I'm sure many people DID do their homework before buying their homes. How is property value going to go up? The loop was already going to be there. People bought homes knowing they'd get the benefit of the loop -- but a mile or two away where they wouldn't hear or see it. Now it gets changed for the Randleigh Development where NO ONE is currently affected? The only whiners I hear are the ones who have no stake in this tan route.

  • The Deadhead Jan 5, 2011

    The orange corridor has been "protected" for years. The new alternatives (required for federal hwy projects) only became public in September 2010, and they are: blue, green, tan, red, purple, and the yellow crossover. The blue and purple corridors were removed after Holly Springs raised a tee-total fit. The other affected communities are doing the same thing--raising hell.

  • Ouaouaron Jan 5, 2011

    So they have a route that goes through gov't-owned land? Why not use that?

  • BuglessDuster Jan 5, 2011

    "The route, known as the Tan Corridor, would run through a rural area between Clayton and Knightdale"

    And the red route will split the town of Garner in half. It seems more logical to put it where fewer people will be displaced.

  • kcfoxie Jan 5, 2011

    I'm sorry, but as stated these plans have been on the books for a long time. A good citizen would have researched the area they wanted to move to long before signing the mortgage paperwork... There is no one who literally had to buy a house immediately, without doing some level of research on it. I know all about this as many friends have moved to the communities that will be served by the new toll-540 extension, and that road was a major factor in their moving to those communities. Take the whining elsewhere. The church can be worked with, or at the least, moved to a new location not far from an exit on the new highway.