LKN Marine Commission OK’s I77 toll lane application

LKN Marine Commission OK's I77 toll lane application

Aug. 9. By Dave Vieser. Opponents of the I-77 toll lane project were dealt another blow this week when the Lake Norman Marine Commission approved the NCDOT’s application. The commission’s approval was needed because the interstate crosses Lake Norman; the commission works with Duke Energy on lake development as part of their Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) license requirements.

The vote was unanimous last night at the Charles Mack Citizen Center in Mooresville. The vote was also expected.

“My understanding all along was that the Marine Commission is responsible for all matters relating to or affecting public recreation and water safety,” said Widen I-77 head Kurt Naas.

RELATED: I-77 contract won’t survive the ‘chorus of discontent’

“If construction activities such as dust, or debris or drainage would affect water safety, then the Commission should have a say. But I’m not surprised the DOT and Cintra would steamroll that concern as a technicality.”

The issue had been placed on hold for two months while the marine commission asked for additional clarification on the project. However, the NCDOT brought a cadre of officials to the August meeting, including Virginia Mabry, their manager of priority projects. In response to the concerns raised by the commission since June, NCDOT officials promised to conduct visual inspections of the culverts on the I-77 causeway every two years, and a comprehensive inspection every five years.

Comments from the Marine Commission were the last approval needed before Duke Energy can act on the toll lane application.


2 Responses to “LKN Marine Commission OK’s I77 toll lane application”

  1. Whatever NCDOT wants, NCDOT gets. They answer to no one. Citizens are repeatedly marginalized, questions go unanswered, and shortcuts like a “visual inspection” are used to save time. Given Cintra’s history with buckled roads in Texas and an eight-lane bridge that split in half in Canada ALL precautions must be used for sound building. Instead it appears the NCDOT is in bed with Cintra to short cut. I literally pray for our safety and am avoiding I77 when ever possible. LNMC may trust NCDOT but many citizens don’t. I do not trust that all the freight traffic has been factored in, especially the growth due to the airport Intermodal and the planned freight hub at Statesville. And small businesses don’t trust them either due to their disregard for supporting small business effects in road design and from their construction. The LNMC made a choice to trust rather than get better answers. That is in them. I hope their decision was a good one for us all. But the experience with NCDOT/Cintra construction to date does not warrant that trust. I fear this 50 – year old freeway over water was never built for today’s traffic or weight load and that the culverts and bridges won’t all hold up. Where is the first comprehensive inspection, has it even been done?

    Posted by Elizabeth | August 9, 2016, 12:18 pm
  2. The NCDOT is in bed with Cintra because the NCGOP is in bed with them. Don’t forget this began to be pushed through when Tillis was still in the NC legislature. It bought his a US Senate seat and McCrory a governorship. Will LNMC regret the fact that they trusted NCDOT someday? Odds are good that they will. No one really knows what condition the causeway is in but NCDOT themselves, upon a “visual” inspection, rated one of the bridges POOR. So, no problem, let’s slap a few more lanes on top and squeeze a few more onto that POOR quality bridge….what could possibly go wrong?

    Posted by newnormalsurvivor | August 9, 2016, 12:51 pm

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