SOUTHEASTERN N.C. — The Cape Fear transportation planning agency was awarded state funds to assess the community’s need for pedestrian and bicycle improvements.
The Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization received $180,250 for division 3 from the North Carolina Department of Transportation for feasibility studies. The WMPO applied for the feasibility study grants on behalf of the City of Wilmington and Kure Beach, which were awarded $82,400 and $97,850, respectively.
Feasibility studies will evaluate the viability of a transportation project, complete initial stages of design and environmental review, and develop implementation strategies. Public input will play an important role in each study’s conclusions.
The WMPO was one of 25 towns and organizations to be awarded from the more than $2 million in funds, approved by the North Carolina Board of Transportation — the group that establishes policies and priorities for NCDOT.
“We’re excited because this money will allow these communities to take the first step toward something that could have a lasting, positive impact,” state Transportation Secretary Eric Boyette said in a press release. “We know that bike and walking paths help connect communities and improve the quality of life for residents in immeasurable ways.”
The studies enable communities to examine route alternatives, develop cost estimates, and advance projects to compete for additional funding for design and construction.
The types of projects to be considered include paths that can be shared by walkers, runners and cyclists, paved trails, greenways and sidewalks.
Staff in NCDOT’s Integrated Mobility Division recommended the 25 communities for feasibility study grants, based on the applications submitted in January.
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