Monday, June 17, 2024

City plans to spend $612K to beautify Eastwood-Military Cutoff interchange

Wilmington is prepared to set aside $612,000 for aesthetic improvements for NCDOT’s Eastwood Road-Military Cutoff interchange. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy City of Wilmington)

WILMINGTON — The City of Wilmington plans to set aside $612,000 to finance planned aesthetic improvements for the planned Eastwood Road and Military Cutoff interchange.

The N.C. Department of Transportation project will cost an estimated $30.75 million to construct, according to current estimates.

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Tuesday, Wilmington City Council will vote on a resolution supporting the financing for aesthetic enhancements as part of its consent agenda. The cost covers estimates to install a sand stone-colored stain on the bridge, support beams, powder-coated railings, shadowbox bridge barriers, decorative lighting, black powder-coated mast-arm signal poles, and decorative walls.

In February, council’s Governance Committee approved a federal color scheme for the project.

Like most N.C. DOT projects, work on the Eastwood-Military Cutoff interchange has been delayed due to the department’s cash-flow issues. Originally planned to begin in 2022, construction now is scheduled for 2025.

In fiscal year 2018-2019, the city set aside $560,000 in its capital improvement plan to fund the aesthetic upgrades.

The interchange is slated to improve congestion that currently collects at a four-way signal intersection. The overpass will cross over Military Cutoff with Eastwood Road elevated by a bridge.

When the project was first presented in 2017, traffic was projected to increase by 57% on Military Cutoff and by 44% on Eastwood Road between 2015 and 2035.

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