NCDOT moves up Hampstead Bypass project by 5 years

Updated: Aug. 11, 2017 at 12:28 PM EDT
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PENDER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - The NC Department of Transportation says the Hampstead Bypass project has been moved up by five years after streamlining internal processes as well as making design changes and reducing costs.

State transportation officials met with the Pender County Commissioners on Aug. 7 to discuss the bypass project and provide them with the latest information.

The project is expected to start in less than three years and will be open to traffic by 2025.

According to Brian Rick, spokesperson for the NCDOT, the project was originally expected to cost $133 million, but the recent cost-saving measures are expected to save between $15 million and $25 million.

The major changes to the previous design include the revision of the northern interchange to improve safety and access and to reduce impacts; relocation of the mid-town interchange to Hoover Road, which will give South Topsail Elementary School a second entrance and exit and improve congestion at Hoover Road and U.S. 17.

The project also includes a previously separate "Superstreet" project designed to improve safety along U.S. 17.

"Having received updates regarding the Hampstead Bypass from NCDOT every couple of months, I am very pleased with the design enhancements which have been incorporated as well as the significant reduction in overall costs," said Pender County Commissioner David Piepmeyer. "DOT has done an excellent job of accelerating this project."

"The Hampstead Bypass and the U.S. 17 Superstreet are top priorities for this community," said Deputy Division Engineer Chad Kimes. "We have already accelerated the northern section of the Hampstead Bypass project by close to five years. One of DOT Secretary Jim Trogdon's top priorities has been to improve the way we deliver projects, so the community can realize the benefits sooner."

Both Hampstead Bypass projects are expected to provide greater connectivity to the surrounding communities, such as Wilmington, Jacksonville, and Surf City, as well as improve the overall U.S. 17 corridor.

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