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Project Highlights

​​​​​​Latest News and Updates 

On Feb. 23, 2023, the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals concurred with the U.S. District Court's ruling on Dec. 13, 2021, that the N.C. Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration complied with federal laws and regulations regarding a lawsuit in 2019. 

The next step for the project team will focus on obtaining all environmental permits: 

  • N.C. Department of Environmental Quality - Division of Water Resources 
  • N.C. Department of Environmental Quality - Division of Coastal Management 
  • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 
  • U.S. Coast Guard
Additional activities before construction could begin including: 

  • Obtaining environmental permits 
  • Updating the traffic and revenue study and toll financing plan 
  • Procurement and bid process for selecting a contractor team to complete the final design and construction 
  • Preparing final design plans 
  • Federal Highway Administration consultation  
  • Acquiring right of way 

Please note, some of these activities will be worked on simultaneously. ​

Comparative Analysis

Required by federal law, a comparative analysis is underway to evaluate multiple methods that could be used to build the proposed Mid-Currituck Bridge project. The N.C. Department of Transportation project team is currently evaluating the proposed project as either a traditional N.C. Turnpike Authority toll project or as a public-private partnership toll project. A public-private partnership is a contractual agreement between a public entity and a private company to manage public infrastructure project.

The project team will evaluate several considerations for each proposed  method including funding, cost, construction, project risk and tolling policies. This information will be included in a comprehensive report and  presented to the Albemarle Rural Planning Organization​, which will then make the final decision on how the proposed project is built.

Court Rules in Favor of NCDOT 

On Dec. 13, 2021, NCDOT received notification that the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of N.C. decided in favor of NCDOT and the Federal Highway Administration. A lawsuit was filed in April 2019 by the Southern Environmental Law Center (on behalf of the North Carolina Wildlife Federation and No MCB-Concerned Citizens and Visitors Opposed to the Mid-Currituck Bridge) challenging the FHWA and NCDOT’s environmental analysis and decision document for the project. The court ruled that NCDOT and FHWA complied with applicable federal laws and regulations. The project team is evaluating the schedule and working on next steps to move forward.

In January 2012, NCDOT, the N.C. Turnpike Authority and the FHWA approved the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the project. 

Work on the Record of Decision was paused following the approval of the Final Environmental Impact Statement for NCDOT to establish the state, regional and local transportation improvement funding priorities using the strategic prioritization process in accordance with the Strategic Transportation Investments legislation that was signed into law in June 2013. 

The Mid-Currituck Bridge project was ranked using the new funding formula and was initially funded in the 2016-2025 State Transportation Improvement Program for right-of-way acquisition and construction to begin in 2019. The project remained funded in the 2018-2027 STIP. Once funding for the project was reestablished, work toward a Record of Decision resumed. 

The Final Environmental Impact Statement was also re-evaluated because it had been more than three years since its approval. The re-evaluation considered changes regarding the project, its surroundings, impacts and any new issues, circumstances or information that was not considered in the original document. Also considered were changes in laws or regulations that apply to the project. 

The re-evaluation process confirmed the information presented in the Final Environmental Impact Statement is an accurate analysis of the anticipated project impacts and therefore a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement is not required. The Record of Decision was published in 2019, signifying the completion of the environmental study process. 

Additional activities before construction begins include: 

  • Updating the traffic and revenue study and toll financing plan
  • Selecting a builder
  • Preparing final design plans
  • Acquiring right of way

  • Obtaining environmental agency permits

Description of Selected Alternative

The selected design option, also referred to as the Selected Alternative​, is MCB4/C1 with Option A. It reduces hurricane evacuation clearance times primarily by reversing the center lane on U.S. 158 north of the bridge. The Selected Alternative also includes several design refinements to help avoid and minimize impacts, in response to government, agency, public input, and comments.
The basic design features of the Selected Alternative are: 
  • A 4.7-mile-long, two-lane toll bridge across Currituck Sound with approach roads in Currituck County. 
  • A mainland bridge approach road placed between Aydlett Road and approximately 430 to 720 feet north of the powerline that parallels Aydlett Road. The bridge approach would intersect U.S. 158 with an interchange. A toll plaza would be just east the U.S. 158 interchange. 
  • The mainland bridge approach road would include a 1.5-mile-long bridge over Maple Swamp. Drivers traveling between U.S. 158 and Aydlett would continue to use Aydlett Road. In Aydlett, the approach road would pass through Aydlett on fill (approximately three to 23 feet high) and bridge Narrow Shore Road. 
  • A bridge approach road on the Outer Banks that ends in the undeveloped Phase II of the Corolla Bay subdivision. In May 2015, the Board of Transportation authorized the advanced purchase of this property at the request of the property owner. It was purchased in February 2016 by NCDOT. The bridge approach would connect with N.C. 12 at an intersection approximately two miles north of the Albacore Street retail area. 
  • Widening N.C. 12 for approximately 0.7 mile, in the bridge end between Devils Bay (entrance to the Corolla Bay subdivision) and North Harbor View Drive. 
  • Roundabout at the bridge at N.C. 12. 
  • Left turn lane on Albacore Street for drivers turning from Albacore Street to southbound N.C. 12. 
  • Marked pedestrian crossings on N.C. 12 at North Harbor View Drive, as well as at the bridge terminus at N.C. 12 (one across N.C. 12 and one across the bridge approach road). 

Hurricane evacuation clearance time reduction features include: 

  • On the mainland, reversing the center turn lane on U.S. 158 between the U.S. 158/Mid-Currituck Bridge interchange and N.C. 168.
  • On the Outer Banks, adding approximately 1,600 feet of new third outbound lane to the west of the N.C. 12/ U.S. 158 intersection to provide additional road capacity during a hurricane evacuation. The additional lane would start at the U.S. 158/Cypress Knee Trail/Market Place Shopping Center intersection and end approximately 450 feet west of the Duck Woods Drive intersection, a total distance of approximately 1,600 feet. From this point, the new lane would merge back into the existing U.S. 158 westbound lanes over approximately 300 feet.

11/17/2023 7:09 AM