11/06/11 — I-795 asked to be named for Anderson, Lancaster

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I-795 asked to be named for Anderson, Lancaster

By Steve Herring
Published in News on November 6, 2011 1:50 AM

The Goldsboro Metropolitan Planning Organization will be asked Thursday to adopt a resolution that the state Department of Transportation name the Wayne County section of Interstate 795 in honor of senior Wayne County Commissioner Andy Anderson and former U.S. congressman and Goldsboro attorney Martin Lancaster.

The MPO also will consider lending its support to several regional highway projects stretching from Kinston to Hampstead.

Anderson was involved in the promotion, design and planning of the U.S. 117 North corridor, later renamed I-795, for decades, having served on various committees, including vice chairman of the county's Transportation Advisory Committee.

In 2009, Anderson received the Regional Transportation Leadership Award from the East Carolina Council for his efforts in the groundwork and coordination of agencies in the completion of the I-795 corridor.

Lancaster also was instrumental in supporting and promoting the planning and construction of the interstate highway through Wayne County, which connects I-40 to I-95.

The MPO Technical Communicating Committee (staff) will meet Thursday at 9 a.m. followed by the Technical Advisory Committee (voting board) meeting at 10 a.m. in the upstairs anteroom at Historic City Hall.

MPO members at their August meeting said a regional approach was needed for highway projects if eastern North Carolina was going to successfully compete with larger urban areas.

Members suggested that the region select only a handful of projects instead of many different ones, even if the projects were not in Wayne County. The idea is that such an approach would enhance the possibility of the projects receiving state approval.

To that end, the Goldsboro MPO has joined a coalition of MPOs and Rural Planning Organizations that have united to identify what members are calling the region's most critical highway needs. The Eastern North Carolina MPO/RPO Coalition represents the 13 counties that make up North Carolina's Eastern Region. It includes the Goldsboro, Greenville and Jacksonville MPOs and the Down East, Eastern Carolina, Mid-East and Upper Coastal Plains RPOs.

The MPO will consider encouraging DOT to expedite the construction of several highways in eastern North Carolina, including a new U.S. 70 bypass of Kinston.