Gov. Roy Cooper on Wednesday released a list of eight major transportation projects to be considered for federal funding as President Donald Trump develops his infrastructure plan.
The National Governors Association is compiling a list of projects for the Trump administration to consider, and Cooper sent the group North Carolina’s wish list – mostly interstate highway upgrades along with the planned Durham-Chapel Hill light rail line. A list of 428 “shovel ready” projects was submitted to Trump last week.
“Moving ahead with shovel ready projects like these will create good paying jobs and provide a shot in the arm to our state’s economy,” Cooper said in a news release Wednesday. “Improving highways and mass transit will make North Carolina an even better place to live and do business.”
The list includes funding to complete the $1.87 billion, 18-mile light rail project connecting Durham and Chapel Hill. Backers of the project are working to fill a $254 million funding gap after the legislature capped state funding for light rail projects.
The other projects on the list are:
▪ Improvements to Interstate 95 throughout the 182-mile segment that runs through the state. The upgrades include paving projects, interchange additions, bridge safety projects and other improvements. Cooper’s release doesn’t mention any proposal to widen the highway.
▪ Completing the I-295 Fayetteville outer loop in Cumberland and Robeson counties.
▪ Completing the Winston-Salem northern beltway.
▪ Improving the I-40 and I-77 interchange in Iredell County, including more lanes, new bridges and ramps.
▪ Widening 22.2 miles of I-26 in Buncombe and Henderson Counties, including the replacement of the Blue Ridge Parkway bridge.
▪ Widening U.S. 74/Independence Boulevard in Mecklenburg County to three lanes with additional express toll lanes.
▪ Widening I-485 in Mecklenburg County, adding an express toll lane in each direction along from I-77 to U.S. 74 (Independence Boulevard).