News Releases

4/3/2017: New Triangle Expressway Interchange Now Open to Traffic

New Triangle Expressway Interchange Now Open to Traffic

Posted 4/3/2017 10:53:51 AM

RALEIGH – Drivers on the Veridea Parkway in Holly Springs now have a direct link to the Triangle Expressway. The new Veridea Parkway interchange, located between U.S. 1 and N.C. 55 Bypass, opened to traffic on April 3. It is the first new interchange for the expressway since its final phase opened in 2013. “The N.C. Turnpike Authority sees the new interchange as an advantage for residents in the area,” said Executive Director Beau Memory.  “This addition will improve mobility for current traffic and larger volumes of traffic anticipated in the future, as a result of substantial growth and development in the area.” Previously, drivers wanting to get on the Triangle Expressway from Veridea Parkway, formerly Old Holly Springs-Apex Road, had to drive about five miles out of their way to get onto the expressway. The new interchange provides a direct north-south connection. “We are very excited that the new Holly Springs/Apex I-540 Interchange will offer our citizens and commuters a safer and faster option for their travels,” said Holly Springs Mayor Dick Sears. A new interchange at Morrisville Parkway in western Cary is also being designed, with construction scheduled to begin in 2018. Drivers who use a Quick Pass transponder on the Triangle Expressway have the largest coverage area of toll program interoperability in the nation. The NC Quick Pass is interoperable with toll roads and bridges that accept Florida’s Sun Pass and Georgia’s Peach Pass. The NC Quick Pass E-ZPass transponder provides further interoperability with E-ZPass facilities in 15 states throughout the east, northeast and midwest sections of the country. For NC Quick Pass information, including payment and purchase options, call 1-877-7MY-PASS (1-877-769-7277) or visit the NC Quick Pass website. ***NCDOT***
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3/31/2017: Mercator Advisors LLC to Conduct Review of I-77 Contract

Mercator Advisors LLC to Conduct Review of I-77 Contract

Posted 3/31/2017 4:44:24 PM

RALEIGH – The N.C. Department of Transportation announced today it will utilize the services of Mercator Advisors LLC to conduct a review of the I-77 Express Lanes contract. This comes after Secretary Jim Trogdon announced earlier this month that the department would engage a firm to conduct an in-depth, outside review. Mercator has no previous involvement in the project and has an extensive transportation finance background. The firm provides a wide array of financial consulting services to public agencies that sponsor major infrastructure projects and capital assistance programs. Mercator’s clients include federal, state and local governmental agencies. N.C. Turnpike Authority staff will facilitate the review process. NCTA was not part of the original I-77 contract negotiations, but can support Mercator’s data and logistical needs. As part of this review, NCDOT also wants the public to provide input on the issues of greatest concern to them regarding the contract. Feedback, ideas and recommendations can be provided on the I-77 Express Lanes project page on NCDOT’s website. This input will be important in the contract review process. The final report is expected to be released late this summer.         The estimated cost of the review is $100,000. ***NCDOT***
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3/30/2017: Triangle Expressway Performance Enables Refinancing That Could Benefit Drivers

Triangle Expressway Performance Enables Refinancing That Could Benefit Drivers

Posted 3/30/2017 8:03:38 AM

RALEIGH – Due to the Triangle Expressway’s strong performance, this week the N.C. Turnpike Authority took advantage of favorable market conditions to refinance a portion of the project’s outstanding bonds. This will result in incremental savings of nearly $94 million for the remaining life of the project. “I applaud our team’s efforts to identify ways to save money and still provide a high level of service to our customers,” said Turnpike Authority Executive Director Beau Memory.  “The Turnpike Authority will continue to look for innovative ways to deliver transportation infrastructure to North Carolina.” Investors are impressed with the strong performance to date on the project, which has resulted in a credit rating upgrade from Standard & Poor’s.  Since the Triangle Expressway opened in 2011, its revenues are 26 percent above projections. The current toll rate schedule will not change as a result of this issuance, but if the project continues to perform as projected, potential benefits down the road could include: Reducing the state’s contributions for Complete 540; Giving the N.C. Turnpike Authority Board toll rate flexibility in the future; or Paying off the project debt more quickly, therefore taking tolls off the road earlier. Revenue raised through the tolling process is used to help pay off the bonds sold to fund the $1 billion highway, as well as overall maintenance including road repairs, signs, mowing and winter weather preparation and response. ***NCDOT***
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1/24/2017: USDOT Picks N.C. Turnpike Authority for Driverless Car Testing Site

USDOT Picks N.C. Turnpike Authority for Driverless Car Testing Site

Posted 1/24/2017 6:24:06 AM

RALEIGH –The U.S. Department of Transportation recently designated North Carolina as a proving ground pilot site for the testing of automated vehicle technologies. “The North Carolina Turnpike Authority, with its world-class facility, partnerships and research, is proud to serve as a designated automated vehicle proving ground,” Acting Transportation Secretary Mike Holder said.  “We are committed to ensuring the safety of the traveling public and the state’s roadways as we test this technology.” The state’s turnpike authority was selected from a competitive group of more than 60 applicants, including academic institutions, other state transportation departments, cities, as well as private entities and partnerships. National transportation officials say the sites chosen all have different facilities that can be used to gauge safety, manage various roadways and conditions, and handle various types of vehicles. “The Triangle Expressway, with its access to three Tier 1 research universities and the largest research park in North America, make it the ideal location for this pilot program,” said Turnpike Authority Executive Director Beau Memory. “As safety is our number one priority, we believe this opportunity will allow us to learn how to best keep our customers safe with this emerging technology.” In addition to the North Carolina Turnpike Authority, other designees include: City of Pittsburgh and the Thomas D. Larson Pennsylvania Transportation Institute Texas AV Proving Grounds Partnership U.S. Army Aberdeen Test Center American Center for Mobility (ACM) at Willow Run Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) & GoMentum Station San Diego Association of Governments Iowa City Area Development Group University of Wisconsin-Madison Central Florida Automated Vehicle Partners
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2/3/2016: NCDOT Identifies Recommended Complete 540 Preferred Alternative

NCDOT Identifies Recommended Complete 540 Preferred Alternative

Posted 2/3/2016 10:12:06 AM

RALEIGH –The NC Department of Transportation will recommend “Detailed Study Alternative 2” as the preferred alternative for the Complete 540 project to federal and state agency officials later this month. From west to east, this route contains the orange, green (southern portion), mint and green (northern portion) corridor segments. After the recommendation is presented, NCDOT’s federal and state agency partners will provide formal comments about the Department’s recommendation. NCDOT will then review those comments and make any necessary changes before announcing the official preferred alternative to the public this spring. NCDOT has recommended the orange, green and mint segments because they: Are formally supported by all local governments; Minimize the number of relocations of homes and businesses, compared to other alternatives; Avoid impacts to the Swift Creek Watershed critical area (a source for Raleigh’s drinking water); Avoid the Clemmons Educational State Forest; Avoid impacts to historic resources; and Minimally affect only one local park. In determining this recommendation, NCDOT used data from the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (including topics such as impacts on the environment, homes and businesses, parks, community facilities and historic sites, and cost), past public comments on the proposed alternatives, as well as public comments made during the public comment period that ran from Nov. 9, 2015 through Jan. 8, 2016. For the next steps, NCDOT plans to announce the recommendation of the official preferred alternative this spring. Following that, the final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) will conclude the environmental process, and NCDOT expects to award the construction contract in phases, starting in fiscal year 2017-2018. Phase one’s route is from the N.C. 55 Bypass to U.S. 401. Complete 540 will extend the Triangle Expressway from the N.C. 55 Bypass in Apex to the U.S. 64/U.S. 264 Bypass in Knightdale, completing the 540 Outer Loop around the greater Raleigh area. This will link the towns of Apex, Cary, Clayton, Garner, Fuquay-Varina, Holly Springs and Raleigh. By better connecting these towns and cities, the project is anticipated to ease existing and future ­­congestion on area roads, including Interstate 440, I-40, N.C. 42, N.C. 55 and Ten Ten Road. For more information about the project, visit the Complete 540 webpage.
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