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monsoon

Traffic Congestion and Highway Construction

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I see folks have been throwing around numbers regarding how much money Charlotte will get. Where are these numbers coming from. On page two of the list of potential project, R-2248E (I-485, NC 115 to I-85) is shown as an advanced delivery project. http://www.ncdot.gov/_templates/download/e...micStimulus.pdf

This means that NCDOT is still looking advance this project with stimulus funds. The project is scheduled to go to right of way in July 2009. This would mean that Charlotte is getting more than $54 million.

The $54 million came from NCDOT, and that figure is just for NCDOT Division 10, not Mecklenburg County alone. Charlotte itselfwill get less than that number when its all said and done. That list of projects you linked to is not the official list of projects that will get funded, its the "wish list."

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Does anyone know if the New Bern money indicates unfair manipulation by the new governor or a crony from the same town or just the same old problem with the so called 'equity' formula the legislature designed to inequitably subsidize rural areas?

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Does anyone know if the New Bern money indicates unfair manipulation by the new governor or a crony from the same town or just the same old problem with the so called 'equity' formula the legislature designed to inequitably subsidize rural areas?

Both if it were my guess. So much corruption up top.

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I'm wondering if anybody knows about this project: The widening and rerouting of Mallard Creek Rd. from WT Harris to Graham St.

Supposedly it is to begin construction April 2010 and is funded by the North Carolina Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). Will the stimulus money have any affect on TIP projects, or could these projects be put on hold? Also, the City Blvd. extension to Mallard Creek?

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Hell has frozen over as Perdue made a statement today in Mint Hill (for the 218 project paid for by the new stimulus money) that construction of the last leg of I-485 would start by the end of this year. Anyone see this one coming?

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Looking at the TIP, FY2010 has right of way purchases for that leg. Perhaps that is what she means.

If they are finding a way to accelerate that, the good. Not that I particularly care about that project, but because I am sick of all the beotching about it not being done yet. Let's get it over with already.

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http://obstraffic.blogspot.com/2009/02/per...o-start-in.html

So the implication is that the money that Moose had been socking away for the 74 Bypass will be spent on 485. That really makes me mad. So now general money that could have been used on lots of projects is now being spent on the last road in the region eligible for the Loop Funds. Freeing up loop money in the 2015 time frame that then cannot be spent in this city. That means we have given up funds to be spent elsewhere in the state, setting us back on our funds for our long range plan in this city that is already underfunded. All because people don't want to wait 5 freaking years for an freeway that runs between 2 malls.

Politically, I see no choice but for them to try to speed it up, but they need to make us whole on loop funds. What this means is that now New Bern or Fayetteville or some other city can spent this $150m in the mid 2010s at our expense.

It is a net loss in funds to this division over 10 years rather than a fix to the ultimate problem of squeezing this region for cash to pay for wasteful projects in rural regions. But everyone will cheer and miss the whole point and the root problem will then be ignored again.

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It is a net loss in funds to this division over 10 years rather than a fix to the ultimate problem of squeezing this region for cash to pay for wasteful projects in rural regions. But everyone will cheer and miss the whole point and the root problem will then be ignored again.

Politics being played at their absolute best. Someone in an office in Raleigh somewhere has a big smile today. Unfortunately most in Charlotte will look kindly to having I-485 bumped up and will not understand the sacrifice that was ultimately made to get it moved up on the time line.

I honestly think I-485 should just be over and done with so we can all move on, but not at the expense of losing so much money so Fayeteville can get their loop (God knows traffic is horrendous there :rolleyes: ).

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I honestly think I-485 should just be over and done with so we can all move on, but not at the expense of losing so much money so Fayeteville can get their loop (God knows traffic is horrendous there :rolleyes: ).

I don't think I-485 will ever be "done." After this last section is open next everybody will want I-485 widened from I-77 to Hwy 51 or Johnston Rd.

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Check out this new video.....the PBS show "NOW" has featured Charlotte!

It covers many things.....from how the Stimulus/Politics affects Transportation

projects, to the growth of South End, and especially how McCrory put his career

on the line for the development of the Lynx Blue Line!

check it out:

http://www.charlottecentercity.org/nav.cfm...b=0&id=2361

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^Its a good video though :)

I'm wondering if anybody knows about this project: The widening and rerouting of Mallard Creek Rd. from WT Harris to Graham St.

Supposedly it is to begin construction April 2010 and is funded by the North Carolina Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). Will the stimulus money have any affect on TIP projects, or could these projects be put on hold? Also, the City Blvd. extension to Mallard Creek?

Mallard Creek Rd will be realigned to intersect with Graham St at Sugar Creek, and (University) City Blvd will be extended to the realigned Mallard Creek Rd. If you look at Google Maps you can kind of see where it will go. Its planning in action, as they have left the right-of-way open for the road to be constructed. Look for Park Place Dr and Nevin Rd.

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The Derita area is the one part of the city that has lagged in the development of strong thoroughfares, as is an area that after sitting and waiting is now finally starting to hit the action phase.

Look carefully at the dashed lines in the Derita area in the Long Range Thoroughfare Plan. http://mumpo.org/PDFs/ThoroughfarePlan.pdf

The city and state plans for each of these will result after a few years in the connection of Mallard Creek Rd to Graham Street, the western extension of [university] City Blvd to the new Mallard Creek Road, and the completion of the intersection at 29-49 to connect City Blvd to University City Blvd (still the lamest road name ever).

It will be in the news because the people in the area are being NIMBYish about the work, but ultimately, this will fix a lot of problems with connectivity in the area, and help to create a viable alternate route to 85.

In the future, this area will also benefit from the eventual extension of Nevin to IBM Drive (okay, maybe THAT is the lamest road name ever) and the new connection of Shopping Center Drive (okay, maybe THAT is the lamest road name ever) across 85 between IBM Drive and IKEA Blvd (okay, maybe THAT is the lamest road name ever).

In part, the timing of the Derita projects was intended to be roughly coincidental with the timing of the North Line, which will have a commuter station in Derita, although they are long overdue regardless of that project.

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Incidentally, while on the MUMPO site, I noticed the draft prioritization for the next NCDOT TIP (Transportation Improvement Program that doles out construction money). Although the estimates have gone up considerably due to the constant delays, the Independence Blvd freeway conversion within Charlotte city limits is top priority (#1 and #2 for a $300m) and the Matthews section to 485 is #6 at $56m.

http://mumpo.org/PDFs/TIP/2011-2017/Candid...List(Draft).pdf

If this prioritization holds, I would expect to see continued use of GARVEE bonds to speed up that conversion and the associated creation of a transit area in the median. If the Charlotte section were put on the TIP, the whole project from Albemarle Road to Hayden Way (near Crown Point) could be potentially worked quickly in succession allowing for the possibility of light rail to go in the South East corridor.

Recall that part of the reason for choosing Bus Rapid Transit on the SouthEast corridor was the uncertainty of when the freeway conversion would be done. You could not plan for Light Rail on the corridor without the associated freeway work being funded and set. So the theory was that you could still build a BRT and the bus would simply run with traffic on the unconverted part. If the freeway conversion is funded and set through Crowne Point (where the transit corridor shifts off of Independence), then it lays the groundwork for consideration of rail on that corridor. Even if BRT is still ultimately selected, at least this would be prerequisite out of the way so that the debate can happen again in a few years after the imminent projects and funding issues shake themselves out.

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^ I think that makes for the fifth or sixth time someone has posted that video ;)
It's a funny video. McCrory didn't put anything on the line. The people who took the political risk for the light rail line were the county commissioners and the local legislators that changed the state law and setup the county transit tax vote to make it happen. The transit tax is a county tax, not a city one. McCrory showed up after this had happened and crowed like the rooster taking credit for the sun coming up.

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......

It will be in the news because the people in the area are being NIMBYish about the work, but ultimately, this will fix a lot of problems with connectivity in the area, and help to create a viable alternate route to 85. ....

They are being NIMBYish about the work because this extension has been in the plans since 1985 and still has not been built. It has changed priority numerous times, has been canceled, resurrected, the city extorted the land from businesses under the threat of annexation then never built the road. In other words, it's been one of the most screwed up road plans in this county in the last 50 years, and the people who live there are upset about it because they can't plan for a road or not. It's been almost a quarter of a century since the city went up there and told the residents this road was coming and to prepare for it. I think they can be forgiven for skepticism on this project.

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The Derita area is the one part of the city that has lagged in the development of strong thoroughfares, as is an area that after sitting and waiting is now finally starting to hit the action phase.

Look carefully at the dashed lines in the Derita area in the Long Range Thoroughfare Plan. http://mumpo.org/PDFs/ThoroughfarePlan.pdf

The city and state plans for each of these will result after a few years in the connection of Mallard Creek Rd to Graham Street, the western extension of [university] City Blvd to the new Mallard Creek Road, and the completion of the intersection at 29-49 to connect City Blvd to University City Blvd (still the lamest road name ever).

It will be in the news because the people in the area are being NIMBYish about the work, but ultimately, this will fix a lot of problems with connectivity in the area, and help to create a viable alternate route to 85.

In the future, this area will also benefit from the eventual extension of Nevin to IBM Drive (okay, maybe THAT is the lamest road name ever) and the new connection of Shopping Center Drive (okay, maybe THAT is the lamest road name ever) across 85 between IBM Drive and IKEA Blvd (okay, maybe THAT is the lamest road name ever).

In part, the timing of the Derita projects was intended to be roughly coincidental with the timing of the North Line, which will have a commuter station in Derita, although they are long overdue regardless of that project.

Thanks for this rundown. I'm pretty familiar with the plan, my biggest question was if the stimulus/recession was going to alter the timeline at all. Right now, MUMPO is saying a construction date of April 2010 for the Mallard Creek realignment.

I was thinking this project would coincide with the final segment of I-485, as I've read the goal is to have Mallard Creek & Graham St. as a 4 lane corridor all the way from the new 485 section to uptown. Here's a little map outlining pretty much everthing you said (except the Nevin to IBM Drive):

3307040583_6af473ca32_o.jpg

This would really help ease congestion on WT Harris, which right now is the only easy way to get from Derita, Stateville, Croft, and Northlake areas to the University area. Oh, and about the NIMBYs; I'm not sure who is at fault, but new condos were built off of Mallard Creek Rd. at Mallard Park Dr. that are right in the middle of the future right of way. Doh!

And why isn't Solectron Dr. open to the public? I don't care if it is trespassing - I'm going to use it on my bicycle this summer when I ride to the University area. I can take it to IBM, then cross WT Harris and take Research & David Taylor to the greenway.

Edited by InitialD

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Thanks for the mockup InitialD! Don't forget the Nevin Road extension to IBM, which fits in perfectly with the connection across 85 to add additional East-West thoroughfare connectivity.

I have asked Steve Harrison to follow up on the angle I am concerned with on 485. He believes that the arrangement is to loan the general purpose money until the loop funds come available in 2015, which would then still be able to be spent on another project. Hopefully we'll get a true answer on that part of it.

As for Derita, the history of road funding is always screwed up, but it seems that people wouldn't quibble AFTER the wait is over.

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.....

This would really help ease congestion on WT Harris, which right now is the only easy way to get from Derita, Stateville, Croft, and Northlake areas to the University area. Oh, and about the NIMBYs; I'm not sure who is at fault, but new condos were built off of Mallard Creek Rd. at Mallard Park Dr. that are right in the middle of the future right of way. Doh!

And why isn't Solectron Dr. open to the public? I don't care if it is trespassing - I'm going to use it on my bicycle this summer when I ride to the University area. I can take it to IBM, then cross WT Harris and take Research & David Taylor to the greenway.

Blame that on the city. That was originally IBM land where they used to operate a railroad line through there from their plant to the NS track in Derita. As I understand it, the city threatened IBM with some zoning changes that were requested if they didn't hand over the land for the project. I believe there were some discussions over the legality of this move but I believe they agreed to give the land to the City. Later the city said the road plan had been effectively canceled, so a developer ended up purchasing the the property and building those homes. Keep in mind the city approved the zoning change and the subdivision plans that allowed those homes to be built. Now the road plan is back on the books. As I said, this mess is completely the fault of the city of Charlotte.

Solectron Dr isn't open to the public because it isn't a public road. That is also a former IBM building and when it was sold off, access was troublesome since the only way to the building was via IBM drive. Hence they built their own drive out to one of the surrounding highways. Prior to the mid-90s IBM drive was an unnamed private road that was also closed off to the public.

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^^

Thanks for pointing that out. I checked out the satellite view on Google Maps and sure enough - there it was!

Hey monsoon, any idea when those tracks were last used?

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Hey monsoon, any idea when those tracks were last used?

My guess is probably around 20 years though I think the tracks remained there for another decade before they were torn out. There was a crossing on IBM drive slightly west of the intersection with Neal Rd. If you look closely you can still see signs of it. It's a bit of a shame they didn't preserve the ROW as this could have been used to offer spur train service both the former IBM facility, and also to the First Union/Wachovia/Wells CTC as well as all the other stuff built in the area. Note that it connects to the same track where the North CR is supposed to run.

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