- The N.C. Department of Transportation
is developing a project to improve a one-mile section of U.S. 421/Business 40 in downtown Winston-Salem, from east of Church Street to west of Fourth Street. The project includes removing the existing pavement and replacing it with new concrete pavement. The project will also modernize the entrance and exit ramps, and replace most of the bridges on and over U.S. 421/Business 40 with new bridges that meet current traffic demands and modern design specifications. The project will create a safer, longer lasting roadway that will help drivers get where they need to go more efficiently, as well as improve local and regional connectivity, reduce congestion and enhance safety.The Federal Environmental Assessment (EA) for the U.S. 421/Business 40 Improvement Project has been completed and the document is now available for public review and comment. An EA documents the analysis of the possible positive and negative impacts that a proposed project may have on the environment, social, and economic aspects of the area. The purpose of the document is to determine if the proposed project will significantly affect the environment. If significant impacts are identified, an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be prepared. If no significant impacts are identified, a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) will be prepared.The EA investigated a range of alternatives including a "No Build" option which identifies possible impacts if nothing is done at all and provides a baseline for the analyses. Based on the analyses completed thus far, the EA identifies the two alternatives which will be carried forward for additional analyses and public review and comment by all interested parties. A public hearing will be held this summer to formally present the project and receive comments. Additional details regarding the date, time and location of the public hearing will be available in the coming weeks. Public comments on the EA will be accepted through the Public Hearing comment period.Following the public hearing and a review of all public comments, a Preferred Alternative will be selected. A determination as to the significance of the identified impacts of the Preferred Alternative will be made and either an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) or Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) will then be prepared.The EA is available for review on the project website at www.business40nc.com and at the following locations:Winston-Salem Forsyth UA MPOCity of Winston-Salem - Bryce A. Stuart Municipal Building100 East First Street, Suite 307Winston-SalemNCDOT Division Office375 Silas Creek ParkwayWinston-SalemForsyth County Public LibraryCentral Library -North Carolina Room660 West Fifth StreetWinston-SalemWinston-Salem State UniversityC.G. O'Kelly Library -Main Circulation Desk601 S. Martin Luther King Jr. DriveWinston-SalemComments regarding the EA can be submitted by mail to Mr. Michael Penney, PE, Project Development and Environmental Analysis Unit, NCDOT, 1548 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC, 27699-1548, by phone at (919) 707-6006, or by email at email@example.com.