Independence widening should help College Rd. congestion in Wilmington

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email
Posted by Kristy Ondo - email

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Work began in the expansion of Wilmington's Independence Boulevard to four lanes.

The work is taking place between Shipyard Boulevard and Carolina Beach Road, and a dead end at Museum Drive will soon connect to Independence.

Officials hope more cars on Independence will mean fewer cars on the almost always busy South College Road.

"Obviously, Independence is a major road for us, a major East-West connection. Adding those lanes will give more capacity to those streets and take some pressure off other roads," said public services director Richard King.

While some drivers agreed with King, others said expanding Independence will entice more drivers to use an already busy road.

"I don't even attempt to go that way, because you can sit there and wait and wait and wait," said Wilmington driver Dan Caison.

Caison said city officials should focus on the traffic flow of Independence, instead of using it to fix other traffic problems.

The almost 6.5 million dollar Independence widening project is expected to take a year to complete.

The project is funded by the 2006 transportation bond.

Engineers said drivers might see traffic delays, but no roads will be closed during construction.

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