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Turnpike Authority updates officials on I-540 loop

Posted February 17, 2010
Updated February 18, 2010

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— The North Carolina Turnpike Authority on Wednesday evening updated transportation officials on the remaining portions of the Interstate 540/N.C. Highway 540 loop in Wake County.

The southern segment stretching 18 miles from N.C. Highway 55 near Holly Springs to the Interstate 40 Clayton Bypass is expected to be open to traffic by 2019.

Environmental studies are also underway for the eastern portion, which would run 12 miles from the I-40 Clayton Bypass to the existing I-540 near Knightdale. No date has been set yet for opening that section.

The first section of the three-part, 18.8-mile Triangle Expressway – N.C. Highway 540 between N.C. Highway 54 in Morrisville and N.C. 55 near Research Triangle Park – opened two years ago, and drivers have been using it toll-free since then.

The other section, the 3.4-mile Triangle Parkway from I-40 and the Durham Freeway to N.C. 540 is expected to open in 2011.

The Triangle Expressway will use an electronic, no-stop, cashless toll system. The price of the tolls has yet to be determined, but the Western Wake design team estimates it could be about 10 cents to 20 cents per mile.


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  • KermitDFrog Feb 18, 2010

    gotta visit Carpenter Firestation road in Cary... they cut huge tracts of trees out exposing the nicely wooded subdivisions... I hope the people that bought there knew what they were getting into. A freeway 100yds off my property line is not what I've always dreamed of...

  • TomIn Ral Feb 18, 2010

    This project needs to be scrapped and the turnpike commission disbanded, plain and simple.

  • Nobody but Carolina Feb 18, 2010

    "The southern portion will pass within 0.5 miles from my house. Will it hurt or help the value?"

    I've always though of that as a "cancel out." It really depends on the people that are looking to move to that area, some would love to have access that close, while other would not. Personally, I don't want to be that close. I looked at a subdivision in Knightdale over 10 years ago that I really liked. The sales rep told me about the 64 bypass access being less than a quarter mile away and it was a no sale point for me.

  • itom68 Feb 18, 2010

    I have used the southern portion since it opened and it saves me time to the airport.

    I will not use it once there is a toll required. There are other options.

    The southern portion will pass within 0.5 miles from my house. Will it hurt or help the value?

  • I guess I will just type this Feb 18, 2010

    It sounds like the general consensus on here is that there shouldn't be a toll at all, or all of 540 should be a toll road. How do we, as citizens and residents, oppose this? Other than avoiding the toll once completed? I moved to Southwestern Wake County years ago, back when this road was supposed to be completed by 2012 without any tolls and when they had the money to do it; before the botched repaving of I-40 b/t Durham/Chapel Hill, and before they robbed the funds to pay for the Knightdale bypass. I'll be moving before it opens up now, stinks too b/c I like the area, but I'm not paying a toll when no one else using other parts of 540 or any road in NC will be...

  • Timbo Feb 18, 2010

    Meet North Carolina: now known as South New Jersey.

    The Turnpike Authority was forced on us so the developers could make more money faster.

  • Capitals Fan Feb 18, 2010

    Crooks! That's all I have to say... no wait... well no, I guess that does sum it up.

  • commonsensical Feb 18, 2010

    Exactly who comprises this 'Turnpike Authority', what are their salaries, and what do they do with their time? What are they costing the taxpayers? Can you give us some info on that, WRAL?

  • Nobody but Carolina Feb 18, 2010

    Well, the "original" projected completion date was 2025. Now it would be at least 2030 to 2035 with normal financing (without tolls). So there lies the debate: wait 20 to 30 years for copletion without tolls or possibly 10 to 15 years with tolls. Personally I wouldn't want tolls so I'd be on the side of waiting till it fit in the normal budget.

  • hp277 Feb 18, 2010

    What NC needs is more road money - needs far outpace the revenue coming in. Whether that comes from tolls or a higher gas tax, it has to come from somewhere.

    I would welcome another nickel a gallon gas tax if it was guaranteed to be spent in the county where it is raised. I have no interest is paying for toll-free roads in Charlotte or boondoggle bridges on the Outer Banks. If the money is raised here, then spend it here.