Local News

N.C. DOT plans 36 interstate improvement projects

Posted July 27, 2009 11:32 a.m. EDT

— The North Carolina Department of Transportation has received funding to complete 36 interstate improvement projects this summer and fall.

Most of the work will be restricted to nighttime lane closures, with occasional daytime lane closures.

DOT officials said they are able to move forward with the projects due to funding from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, or ARRA, and Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles, or GARVEE bonds.

GARVEE bonds are a financing tool that allows the department to borrow against future federal funding, which helps avoid increased costs due to delays and inflation, according to DOT.

Department officials said they received $838 million from ARRA. Of those funds, $735 million is designated for highway and bridge projects, with $103 million for transit projects.

Last week, DOT sold $242.5 million in GARVEE bonds – the second in a series that will total about $1 billion. The program will enable the department to accelerate the completion of about 49 projects by more than three years and save taxpayers more than $209 million in inflation costs, according to the department.

Every $1 million spent on transportation creates 30 jobs, according to the Federal Highway Administration. Every dollar invested in transportation generates $6 in economic impact, DOT officials said, citing the construction industry.