While the N.C. Department of Transportation is studying the replacement of the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge, the department cannot determine at this time which option (see Study Maps) will be selected until the merger process (an interagency effort to streamline the project development and permitting process) is complete.
The new bridge will increase vehicle capacity, expanding the bridge from 4- to 6-lanes. This replacement bridge will also include a protected 15-foot multi-use path that will serve as the only means for pedestrians between Brunswick and New Hanover counties.
Least Environmentally Damaging Practicable Alternative
Currently, a planning and environmental study process, or merger process, has begun and is anticipated to be completed at the end of 2024.
This study is required and will determine the Least Environmentally Damaging Practicable Alternative — an alternative that provides the best transportation solution while balancing impacts to the environment — for replacing the bridge.
Opportunities to receive federal and/or state grants are also being carefully considered to help fund the replacement bridge. Federal and/or state grants, however, are a competitive process that do not cover 100% of the cost so identifying match money will still be a requirement.
NCDOT is working closely with the Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization on funding solutions for the replacement bridge and will continue to do so throughout the entire process.