Raleigh - The following are highlights from this week at the N.C. Department of Transportation. The stories below are also featured in the department's weekly newscast N.C. Transportation Now.
Governor Pat McCrory Moves to Protect Consumers from Flood-Damaged Vehicles
Governor Pat McCrory and officials from the state's Division of Motor Vehicles want to be sure that consumers in North Carolina know what to look for before purchasing a vehicle that may have been damaged by flooding. The Division of Motor Vehicles held an event to show consumers how to identify flood-damaged vehicles and help protect them from potential fraud.
Those differences include water stains, mildew, a strong odor of cleaning products and dirt and grime in small recesses of the engine area. DMV Commissioner Kelly Thomas warned that flood damaged vehicles are easy to sell in ways that defraud the public, especially over the internet. Before buying, consumers are encouraged to obtain a vehicle history report and have a mechanic inspect the car thoroughly.
Bonner Bridge Replacement Project Progressing On Schedule
Secretary Nick Tennyson visited the Outer Banks this week to view progress and receive an update on the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge replacement project. The bridge is an important lifeline for the community and plays a central role in providing safe, reliable transportation between Hatteras Island and the mainland.
The state reached a significant milestone when Governor Pat McCrory joined local, state and federal officials to break ground on the Bonner Bridge replacement over Oregon Inlet on March 8.
To date, 98 pilings have been driven. Pilings are vertical supports that form part of the bridge foundation. The bridge will have a total of 673 pilings. On the north end of the project, a work trestle is taking shape, and on the south end of the project, a loading dock has been built, traffic has been shifted and pilings are being installed where the new bridge and highway will connect.
The new bridge is scheduled to open to traffic in November 2018. The overall project, including the demolition of the existing bridge, is scheduled to be complete in September 2019.
NCDOT Breaks Ground on New $54 Million Surf City Bridge
Secretary Tennyson joined N.C. Board of Transportation Member Sandra Fountain, Surf City Mayor Zander Guy, and other officials at a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Surf City Bridge in Pender County. The new bridge was accelerated by more than a year and helps fulfill Governor McCrory's 25-Year Vision for transportation in North Carolina by replacing an aging bridge and improving highway connections.
The new concrete bridge will replace the existing 61-year-old swing bridge that connects Surf City to Topsail Island. With a 65-foot vertical clearance, the new bridge will eliminate the need to open for vessels, and it will require less maintenance than the existing bridge. In addition, the bridge will be the first over the Intracoastal Waterway to accommodate bicycle and pedestrian traffic with a multi-use path and separate bicycle lanes. The additional width provided by the bicycle lanes will allow two lanes of traffic to exit the island during evacuations.
The new bridge is expected to open to traffic by mid-September 2019, with final project completion in November 2020. It is one of two bridges that provide access to Topsail Island.