RALEIGH - N.C. Department of Transportation Secretary Gene Conti has awarded a contract to resurface a 1.5 mile section of N.C. 11 from Mallard Oil Co. to the roundabout in Lenoir County. The $589,328 contract was awarded to Barnhill Contracting Co. of Tarboro. Work can begin as early as April 2 and be completed by Sept. 30.This is one of 29 contracts totaling $167.9 million awarded by Conti for highway and bridge projects across North Carolina. NCDOT awarded the contracts to the lowest bidders, as required by state law. The bids received on the projects awarded came in about 7.5 percent, or about $13.5 million, below NCDOT estimates. Since Gov. Bev Perdue took office in January of 2009, NCDOT has awarded 540 highway contracts totaling $3.9 billion to ensure that all North Carolinians have access to jobs and educational opportunities.