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Bond money restores funding for three delayed road projects

The Highland Lake Road upgrade is one of three projects funded through an NC road bond financing. The Highland Lake Road upgrade is one of three projects funded through an NC road bond financing.

Three Henderson County highway projects that had been postponed because of the NCDOT's cash shortfall have had their funding restored through the 2020 Build NC bond issue.

 

The projects are:

  • N.C. 191 four-lane project from Mountain Road to N.C. 280 south of Mills River with right of way negotiations in fiscal year 2020 and construction in fiscal year 2023.
  • White Street realignment at Kanuga and Willow roads and extension from Greenville Highway to Spartanburg Highway, with right-of-way negotiations in fiscal year 2020 and construction in fiscal year 2023.
  • The Highland Lake Road upgrade from Greenville Highway to Spartanburg Highway with right-of-way negotiations in fiscal year 2020 and construction in fiscal year 2021.  

All three projects have generated opposition from homeowners and businesses. White Street business owners have protested the widening and roundabout at Kanuga. Homeowners along N.C. 191 have pleaded with the Henderson County Board of Commissioners to block the widening project and the Highland Lake Road upgrade has inspired a slate of candidates in the Village Council election that vows to kill the project.

Issuing the bonds will allow the projects to be delivered and paid for from funds outside of the traditional State Transportation Improvement Program, the NCDOT said. Build N.C. is a financing tool that helps ensure NCDOTbeing can continue strong delivery of critical road projects at the regional and division levels that do not qualify for a similar federal funding tool. The announcement allowed for preliminary engineering and right-of-way negotiations to resume after  suspended due to statewide cost constraints several weeks ago. Those delays will not impact the project schedules. 

“Each of these projects will provide a safer and quicker transportation route for thousands of people who live, work, and travel through our areas,” Division 14 Engineer Brian Burch said in a news release. “These are an excellent uses of Build N.C. funds, and the results will benefit people on a daily basis.”

Projects in Transylvania County include:
• Install roundabouts at U.S. 64/U.S. 276/N.C. 280 in Pisgah Forest with right of way negotiations in fiscal year 2020 and construction in fiscal year 2022.
• Build access control measures on U.S. 64/U.S. 276 between Fortune Cove Road and U.S. 64 Business with right of way negotiations in fiscal year 2020 and construction in fiscal year 2022.
• Improve Wilson Road between Old U.S. 64 and U.S. 276 with right of way negotiations in fiscal year 2021 and construction in fiscal year 2023.