RALEIGH – The following are highlights from this week at the N.C. Department of Transportation. The stories below are also featured in NCDOT Now, the department’s weekly newscast.
New Bonner Bridge Community Day
The new bridge that is replacing the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge over Oregon Inlet at the Outer Banks will open around mid-February, thanks to mild weather and accelerated construction.
At 2.8 miles long and 90-feet high, the new bridge, which connects N.C. 12 between Hatteras and Bodie Island, will replace the original bridge that was built in 1963. Constructed with high-durability concrete and stainless reinforcing steel, the new bridge is expected to have a 100-year lifespan.
Last weekend, more than 1,000 people came out to walk or bike the bridge despite cold temperatures and high winds during a special community day. The day’s events included remarks from state, local and community leaders, a blessing of thankfulness for the bridge, and the laying of a wreath in Oregon Inlet to honor the connection between the people of the Outer Banks and the inlet.
An official ribbon cutting and celebration is planned for April 2, with Governor Cooper among the expected guests.
The safety, efficiency and reliability of rail service in North Carolina will soon be improving.
The department has been awarded a $10 million federal grant to replace a crossing on Millbrook Road in Raleigh with a highway underpass, eliminating the risk of collisions between road users and trains. The grant was applied for as a program of projects to improve safety and mobility for highway and rail users along the rail corridor.
These grade separations, which reduce the chances of a collision between trains, vehicles and people, are a first step to developing the Southeast Rail Corridor. The corridor will connect the Triangle region to communities in Franklin, Vance, Warren and Halifax counties and, ultimately, into Virginia and the Northeast.