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DigitalSky

Independence Blvd

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I saw on the news a few nights ago them saying that the whole Independence Blvd becoming a freeway will now be 8 years for every ONE Mile up to I-485

It is 8 miles to 485 from Albemarle Road, where the latest interchange opened. So 8x8=64. :huh: So does that mean it will take 64 years to complete the entire thing?

Anyway,

this was in today's paper

Interchange may end some headaches

and also this

Transit's Debate: Who gets what?

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all comes back to the same root problem: limited road money, and many expensive project.

If any one of the big projects were done at once, there would be no money for anything else... so independence is done bit by bit, southern 77 is delayed until after 2025/2030, 485 has been spread over decades, and 77 in north meck is barely on the radar.

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Independence out to Village Lake would be rolled into the Southeast CATS funding (sort of). CATS, NCDOT, and the feds would pay for the central median section and some of the interchange improvements for the section.......of course, NCDOT would have to accelerate it's plan somewhat in order to coordinate the conversion, but it is likely that they will, probably at the expense of another Meck. project.

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Just curious, why does NCDOT have such limited funds? How is it that Atlanta and other cities in Georgia have the money to widen their roads? Are they doing something different, or am I just way off?

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one aspect in comparison to georgia is that nc is a multi-polar state, so urban infrastructure must be built in three metro areas, rather than a single primary one.

I think Georgia also has a little bit more diversified tax base. NC seems to be struggle a bit with loss of manufacturing jobs (Textiles, tobacco, and furniture).

It is possible, though, that if NC reversed the lyndo law, where urban money subsidizes rural areas, that urban infrastructure needs could be kept up with more.

I don't think it is a matter of fed funds, though.

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North Carolina has the 2nd most state maintained roads in the country behind Texas, so money is stretched thin.....not to mention GA has a slightly larger population so more tax revenues.....plus NC has several large metros with expansive and expensive road networks (each city is supposed to get it's own loop interstate), wheras GA really only worries about Atlanta.

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Every state has limited funds. It's not like Georgia has found the "fountain of money" for getting federal money that NC is still searching for. From what I understand, the reason the Charlotte projects (As well as many in the triangle and triad) are delayed so severely is because of the state plan to move more highway dollars to the economically disadvantaged counties down east. This money will go towards projects like US17 improvements and the Wilmington Bypass.

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Georgia only has 46,459 lane miles to maintain. NC has 4x that much at 166,574. And yes, 4x the number of miles to maintain makes a huge difference. NC, Virginia, and SC are all in a similar bind when it comes to miles of road to maintain. They need to find a way to shift the burden of road maintenance and trim the number of maintained miles.

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i agree. the 'good roads' era from the 20s when the state took over the county roads should probably be reversed.

I think counties should be in charge of all their non-freeway money.

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i agree.  the 'good roads' era from the 20s when the state took over the county roads should probably be reversed. 

I think counties should be in charge of all their non-freeway money.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Are you sure you mean that? That would make any non-freeway project (repaving, widening, whatever) difficult to coordinate across county lines. I suspect that it's more efficient to handle all the planning, maintenance, and contracting at the state level due to economies of scale.

Do counties handle road maintenance in Georgia?

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Are you sure you mean that? That would make any non-freeway project (repaving, widening, whatever) difficult to coordinate across county lines. I suspect that it's more efficient to handle all the planning, maintenance, and contracting at the state level due to economies of scale.

Do counties handle road maintenance in Georgia?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

good point, so maybe regions as ncdot is already broken up, but the key is for taxes collected in each region/county to be distributed only to that region except for a pool of collective money for freeways.

I'm not sure what other states follow that model, but my understanding is that the reason that nc has one of the largest numbers of miles under state maintenance is not because of the state having more roads, but that the state took over everything from the counties.

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Being new to the area but traveling down Independence each day, I'm struck by the large amount of closed retail stores and the abandoned look. Can anybody tell me what happened that some many of the businesses shut down, when did this occur and if they know of any plans to improve the look of Independance in the near future.

Thanks

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Its the continuing decades long, seemingly permanent NCDOT project to convert Independence, which was once a city street, into a freeway. When a section gets converted, it kills all the business in the area. The section between Morningside and The Plaza was completely razed to the dirt hills that you see now. The Eastway to Albemaro section is the latest to be converted and most of the businesses in this section have closed in the last few years.

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A lot of the businesses have closed simply because of a change in demographics.

(for example, there used to be a Target where the BJ's is now)

As population moved farther out 74 towards Matthews, Indian Trail and Monroe...their business declined and their losses from theft, etc increased.

This page gives some good history on the road itself.

Eventually, it will be an expressway all the way to Matthews..so kiss all those car dealerships that are right on the road (Crown Honda, Scott Clark, etc) goodbye...in about 20 years. :)

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Thanks for the information. I wondered what was going on. Independance is a great street in terms of how accessible it is to uptown but it looks terrible the closer you get to the business district.

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They should tear down all those empty boxes on Independence and build high rise condos and office towers in their place. Build parking decks in back and landscape the front with tree and etc. When they get Rapid Transit out that way, they will have density to make it work.

I think it will be hard to get retail back like it was before construction.

The city should have a long range plan for Independence.

Tax breaks should be given to get this started.

If Independence is not given new life, it will look like bomb out neighhood.

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In a nutshell... It's because that area has turned and is still turning into the area of most low-income families in Charlotte. All types of crimes occur there. The bad news is.... it has to get worse before it can get better (if it does get better). There are barely ANY stores open on that road. There is the Merchandise Mart, which I love. Anyways, it's starting to spread into Matthews/Mint Hill/Other Charlotte areas. I hope it isn't too contagious, otherwise Charlotte is in for a rude economic awakening.

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I think what everyone is trying to say (but is too scared to say it) is... This is the straight up hood and nobody wants to run a businness in the ghetto. They know that if they do they will get robbed, killed, (do I need to go on?). I hate to say it, but if you live in East Charlotte you need to get out as fast as you can, because it ain't getting any better. I agree EastSideResider, Mint Hill/Matthews better watch out. I know Mint Hill has already started experiencing the contagious ghetto disease. In a few words East Charlotte is the straight up hood.

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I'd still rate east Charlotte well above a true 'hood.

Yes, it's cheap and depressing, with vacant buildings. But I don't see abandoned cars, bars on the windows, homeless guys sitting on junk sofas, empty lots full of trash, graffiti on every corner and lamp post.

That's what parts of LA, Fresno, San Bernardino and Long Beach look like. A real 'hood is a place where you drive through, feel conspicuous, and hope nobody follows you. :ph34r:

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I think what everyone is trying to say (but is too scared to say it) is... This is the straight up hood and nobody wants to run a businness in the ghetto. They know that if they do they will get robbed, killed, (do I need to go on?). I hate to say it, but if you live in East Charlotte you need to get out as fast as you can, because it ain't getting any better. I agree EastSideResider, Mint Hill/Matthews better watch out. I know Mint Hill has already started experiencing the contagious ghetto disease. In a few words East Charlotte is the straight up hood.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Are you serious? Mint Hill?? Mint Hill is still farmland - I didn't know there could be ghetto hood farms.

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I think areas east of Independence are more or less screwed, areas west still have a chance if they redevelop, especially in towards town.

I definitely agree, that area by Cricket Arena with all those vacant buildings needs to be bulldozed and redeveloped into high density multi-income housing, it would be a great transit corridor with out-of-uptown prices.

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I have read that over 1 billion dollars have been taken out of the Highway Trust Fund to pay for other nonhighway projects. The politicians will not honor the voters in NC who voted on a 2 cent on gas to go into this trust fund to pay for road construction.

There have been politicians on TV, telling us to contact our representive in Raleigh to stop this looting.

NCDOT has a formula that favorites counties with a small population. They want large cities to pay for all these roads.

Next, we should stop giving money to other states to build roads. For every dollar that goes to Washington, we get back about 85cents. We have the second largest road system in the nation, we should get more money, not less.

All the large cities in NC need to start getting their fair share of highway funds. The Feds will cut out our money for these large cities because they do not meet clean air standards.

So this is why it will take 64 years to build 8 miles in making Independence Blvd.

a feeway to I485. :angry:

I was reading the Raleigh paper, and they were complaining about the funds they lost on roads. You can also hear them in the Traid also.

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