Turnpike Authority eliminates routes for N.C. 540 extension

Posted November 6, 2010 2:18 p.m. EDT
Updated November 17, 2010 8:12 p.m. EST

— The North Carolina Turnpike Authority announced this week that it is eliminating three routes being studied as possible extensions to the state’s first toll road.

The N.C. 540 Southeast Extension would connect to and complete the Triangle Expressway, which is under construction in Wake and Durham counties.

The routes, referred to as the Blue, Purple and Yellow corridors, are being eliminated because of high impacts to neighborhoods, community resources and the environment, the Turnpike Authority said.

The Turnpike Authority is still considering five other routes, including a new one between Interstate 40 and Knightdale (the Tan Corridor) and another (the Red Corridor) in Garner, which town officials say would have an adverse effect on 13 neighborhoods as well as the town’s primary industrial recruitment area.

They will be studied further in the coming months, and the Turnpike Authority says more routes could be eliminated.

Public input was also a factor in the decision to eliminate the routes. The Turnpike Authority received more than 2,000 individual comments, as well as numerous petitions and local government resolutions during a public comment period.