06/19/08 — Plans aim to make Berkeley Boulevard's traffic congestion a bane of the past

View Archive

Plans aim to make Berkeley Boulevard's traffic congestion a bane of the past

By Steve Herring
Published in News on June 19, 2008 1:48 PM

According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation's new Transportation Improvement Plan, congestion along Berkeley Boulevard may be improving within the next few years.

Updated earlier this year, the plan includes $1 million for the 2012 fiscal year for right-of-way acquisition as the department looks to eventually complete the multi-laning of Berkeley Boulevard (U.S. 13) between Royal Avenue and New Hope Road.

Multi-laning means four lanes plus a turn lane.

The northbound section of Berkeley Boulevard from Royal Avenue to New Hope Road already has two lanes and a turning lane. A second southbound lane would be added.

Planning and design are under way for the project, which is actually the first of two phases. The second phase would multi-lane U.S. 13 North all the way to Hood Swamp Road to near where the planned U.S. 70 bypass will likely be constructed.

Design work for the first phase includes a hydrology study of how stormwater runoff would be handled.

Currently there is no funding in the transportation plan, which runs through 2015, for the second phase of the project.

"That doesn't mean that the money will show up in 2016," said Jerry Page of Wilson, DOT Division IV project manager.

But that is not the only road project that will impact Berkeley Boulevard.

Darryl Best of the Goldsboro Planning and Community Development Dept. said that the consulting firm of Kimley-Horn is studying realignment of Royal Avenue with Central Heights Road at Berkeley Boulevard.

The project, currently only in the conceptual stage, would remove the "zig-zag" that motorists now have to make to cross Berkeley Boulevard on those two roads.

Another unfunded project in the TIP is the multi-laning of Wayne Memorial Drive at New Hope Road north to the planned U.S. 70 bypass.

Work on the bypass could get under way as early as August on the section northwest of Goldsboro from N.C. 581, east toward Wayne Memorial Drive.