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8/23/2016: Transportation Secretary Visits Students and Staff at N.C. State

Transportation Secretary Visits Students and Staff at N.C. State

Posted 8/23/2016 4:43:02 PM

Raleigh – Fall classes are under way at N.C. State, and Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson paid a visit to campus Tuesday to encourage students to consider working toward a career with the department. Secretary Tennyson sat in on a civil engineering class in the school’s Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering. He reminded students that the transportation challenges we face in the 21st century, coupled with Governor Pat McCrory’s emphasis on improving the state’s transportation infrastructure through his 25-year Transportation Vision plan, means there will be well-paying and personally rewarding job opportunities. “We need smart, highly-trained people like you to keep North Carolina at the forefront of economic growth,” said Secretary Tennyson. “And the transportation department will play a key role in that growth by continuing to improve the connections between communities and businesses, a key for keeping and adding jobs in our state.” Tennyson reminded students that Governor McCrory's new education initiatives are aimed at making higher education at state schools like N.C. State more affordable. That includes a budget provision that guarantees a student’s undergraduate tuition rate if they graduate within four or five years, depending on their field of study. In addition to the tuition provision, the budget caps fee increases at three percent annually. “College life can be stressful, but at least one less thing to worry about for students and their families is how to deal with a significant increase in the cost of tuition,” said Tennyson. “As a parent, I know the importance of predictable, affordable college tuition.” Tennyson also met with N.C. State Chancellor Randy Woodson, as well as College of Engineering Dean Louie Martin-Vega and transportation faculty members Dr. George List and Dr. Billy Williams to discuss how the state can partner with the school to encourage graduates to consider a career with the Department of Transportation. ***NCDOT***
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8/19/2016: This Week at N.C. Transportation Now: Labor Day 'Booze It and Lose It' Kicks Off

This Week at N.C. Transportation Now: Labor Day 'Booze It and Lose It' Kicks Off

Posted 8/19/2016 3:11:29 PM

Raleigh – The following are highlights from this week at the N.C. Department of Transportation. The below stories are also featured in our weekly newscast, N.C. Transportation Now, which can be viewed by clicking here. North Carolina Highway Safety Symposium and “Booze It and Lose It” Campaign Kick Off The Governor’s Highway Safety Program hosted the annual North Carolina Highway Safety Symposium in Raleigh this week. The event provides local law enforcement officers from throughout the state valuable information from local and national experts on highway safety issues. The symposium concluded with the kick off of the 2016 Labor Day Booze It and Lose It campaign on Friday, Aug. 19. The campaign’s goal is to keep citizens safe on the state’s roadways. It aligns closely with Governor Pat McCrory’s NC Vision Zero initiative, which aims to eliminate all traffic-related injuries and fatalities through strategic, coordinated efforts with public and private partners in traffic safety. The Booze It and Lose It campaign runs through Monday, Sept. 5. New Currituck Ferry Terminal and Welcome Center Opens State Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson, Board of Transportation member Malcolm Fearing and other state and local officials gathered in Currituck for a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, Aug. 17 to celebrate the opening of the new Currituck Sound Ferry Terminal and Welcome Center. The new building replaces one built in 1985 and will serve the Currituck-Knotts Island ferry route. The $2 million facility, 80 percent of which was paid for with a federal grant, was built by A.R. Chesson Construction Co. of Manteo and includes ferry division offices, public restrooms, a public meeting space, and an exhibit on the history and lifestyle of Currituck County. Roberta Road Grade Separation Ribbon Cutting Secretary Tennyson and other officials celebrated the completion of the Roberta Road Grade Separation Project at a ribbon cutting ceremony in Harrisburg on Thursday, Aug. 18. The project included construction of a new extension of Roberta Road from N.C. 49 to Stallings Road, known as Harrisburg Veterans Road, along with a bridge to carry the new extension over the railroad tracks to completely separate train and vehicle traffic. Completion of the project allowed the department to close the at-grade crossings at Hickory Ridge Road and Robinson Church Road, eliminating the possibility of train-vehicle collisions. The Roberta Road Grade Separation project is part of the department’s effort to reduce vehicle-train collisions, improve safety, and reduce congestion along the rail corridor between Harrisburg and Charlotte, which is one of the busiest in the state. It also is one of about 30 projects that are now completed or underway through the Piedmont Improvement Program. Through the program, the department is investing more than $500 million in rail and highway improvements, including track, station and equipment upgrades, between Raleigh and Charlotte. For more information about N.C. Transportation Now, contact the NCDOT Communications Office at (919) 707-2660. Additional news stories from throughout the week can be found on NCDOT.gov.
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8/19/2016: State Launches Aggressive Drunk Driving Enforcement Campaign

State Launches Aggressive Drunk Driving Enforcement Campaign

Posted 8/19/2016 12:30:00 AM

State Launches Aggressive Drunk Driving Enforcement Campaign  Booze It & Lose It to Run Through Labor Day Raleigh – The N.C. Department of Transportation and Governor’s Highway Safety Program intend to make roadways safer for North Carolina’s residents and visitors by cracking down on drunk drivers during the Labor Day holiday. State officials kicked off the annual Labor Day Booze It & Lose It campaign, which runs from Aug. 19 to Sept. 5, at the conclusion of the North Carolina Highway Safety Symposium. “We want everyone in North Carolina to enjoy this Labor Day holiday and make safe choices,” said N.C. Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson. “Our ultimate goal is to eliminate alcohol-related accidents and fatalities by getting impaired drivers off the road through education and enforcement efforts.” During last year’s Booze It & Lose It campaign, state and local law enforcement arrested 3,523 impaired drivers through more than 13,500 sobriety checkpoints across the state. State law makes it illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher. The mission of the Booze It & Lose It campaign aligns closely with Governor Pat McCrory’s NC Vision Zero initiative, which aims to eliminate all traffic-related injuries and fatalities through strategic coordinated efforts with public and private partners in traffic safety. “Drunk driving is selfish and dangerous,” said Don Nail, director of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. “We need everyone to not only make safe decisions for themselves, but also to look out for others. If you know someone is about to drive impaired, take their keys and help them make safe travel arrangements. If you see an impaired driver on the road, contact the police immediately.” In conjunction with the enforcement campaign, state officials will utilize the “Be Smarter Than That” campaign to provide easy access to safe transportation options for members of the public who plan to drink alcohol. The website BeSmarterThanThat.com allows users to designate a sober driver, download a ride app, find public transportation options, and find a taxi based on their location. ***NCDOT***
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8/17/2016: New Currituck Ferry Terminal & Welcome Center Opens

New Currituck Ferry Terminal & Welcome Center Opens

Posted 8/17/2016 11:35:46 AM

Currituck - The Department of Transportation's Ferry Division unveiled its new terminal and welcome center for the Currituck-Knotts Island ferry route today. Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson, along with state and Currituck County officials, hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony for the opening of the $2 million facility. “This beautiful new facility will be a welcome addition for ferry passengers and other Currituck County visitors,” said Secretary Tennyson. “Here, travelers will be able to take a break from their journeys while discovering a little bit about the unique history and geography of the area.” The new building replaces a smaller, outdated one that was built in 1985. It will house Ferry Division Offices, as well as restrooms and vending machines for travelers and a display on Currituck County heritage. “This is yet another piece of good news for Currituck residents who depend on this ferry route,” said Ferry Division Director Ed Goodwin. “Not only do you have a wonderful new terminal here, but thanks to the budget Governor McCrory signed last month, you now know this route will continue to be toll-free and sustainable.” The new terminal and welcome center, buit by A.R. Chesson Construction Company, had 80 percent of its funding covered by a grant from the Federal Transit Administration, with N.C. Transportation funding the remaining amount. The Currituck-Knotts Island ferry route was created in 1962 to help Knotts Island school children avoid a 100-mile round trip commute through Virginia to attend school on the mainland. To this day, Knotts Island students use the ferry daily to get to and from school and extracurricular activities. (NCDOT)
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8/11/2016: State Opens New Section of the Fayetteville Outer Loop

State Opens New Section of the Fayetteville Outer Loop

Posted 8/11/2016 10:57:45 AM

FAYETTEVILLE – Governor Pat McCrory and N.C. Department of Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson joined federal, state and local officials Thursday to celebrate the opening of the next phase of the Fayetteville Outer Loop (I-295), which completes a direct interstate connection between I-95 and Fort Bragg and connects Ramsey Street to Bragg Boulevard. "This stretch of I-295 plays a critical role not only in regional mobility, economic development and freight movement, but also in strengthening the military connections that are needed to support deployment and national security efforts," Governor McCrory said. "The Fayetteville Outer Loop, and in particular this section, will offer unprecedented connectivity and opportunity for eastern North Carolina." Two additional sections of the Fayetteville Outer Loop are currently under construction- the stretch from Bragg Boulevard to the All American Freeway scheduled to be complete by the end of the year, and the section from All American Freeway to Cliffdale Road set to open in October 2018. Planning for the Fayetteville Outer Loop began in the late 1980s, and the first phase of the project from I-95 to Ramsey Street opened in 2005.  "Tremendous teamwork has gone into making this $146 million portion of I-295 a reality, including strong partnerships with federal lawmakers, local officials and Fort Bragg," Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson said. "We all recognize the need to continue investing in infrastructure that strengthens our ability to seamlessly move people and freight. This is one of the many sections of the Fayetteville Outer Loop we are completing to meet growing transportation, military and logistics demands." The state transportation department recently awarded an $85.2 million design-build contract to continue the loop from south of Cliffdale Road to south of U.S. 401. Design-build allows all aspects of a project from design through construction to be completed under a single contract. Construction on this section is expected to begin as early as July 2017, with completion scheduled for May 2021. The remainder of the 39-mile loop is funded through the state’s new transportation funding formula, which Governor McCrory championed to take the politics out of transportation planning. Under the new formula, more than $400 million is being invested to complete the whole loop by 2025. Additional money for highway construction in last year’s budget allowed construction of the southernmost section from Camden Road to I-95 to be accelerated from 2021 to 2020. More information regarding I-295 can be found here.
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