Wayne Memorial Drive

Traffic moves along the section of Wayne Memorial Drive between the U.S. 70 Bypass, in the background, and West New Hope Road on Thursday afternoon. A public meeting on state plans to widen the road will be held on Jan. 15 at the Maxwell Center.

The public will get the chance to review and comment on the $14.4 million road-widening project planned for Wayne Memorial Drive during an upcoming meeting.

One business and one residence will have to be relocated based on the current design for four-laning Wayne Memorial Drive between West New Hope Road and the U.S. 70 Bypass.

N.C. Department of Transportation officials were unable to confirm the exact locations of the affected properties Thursday.

Right-of-way acquisition will begin this year with construction to start in spring 2021 on the nearly 1-mile stretch of road.

The public will have the opportunity to inspect the preliminary roadway design, ask questions and provide comments on the $14.4 million proposal during a Jan. 15 public meeting at the Maxwell Center, 3114 Wayne Memorial Drive. The informal meeting will be held from 4 to 7 p.m.

No formal presentation will be given, and the meeting will follow the same format that was used for recent meetings on the proposal for the U.S. 117 corridor from Goldsboro to Interstate 40 in Sampson County.

People can stop by at any time between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m to look at design maps and ask questions of DOT representatives.

The city of Goldsboro and the Goldsboro Metropolitan Planning Organization, a transportation planning agency, proposed the project to reduce the risk of crashes and ease congestion.

Wayne Memorial Drive is also an area where traffic congestion has increased, with the opening of new businesses along the thoroughfare near Tommy’s Road. In addition to an established Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market, a new Alcoholic Beverage Control store recently opened and construction started on a Bojangles restaurant. The Maxwell Center also opened on Wayne Memorial Drive in 2018.

To improve the safety of pedestrians, sidewalks will be built and the outside lanes will be widened to accommodate bicyclists.

The project is part of the state’s new 10-year transportation improvement plan, which started this year and continues through 2027.

The Jan. 15 meeting will not be the only opportunity for public comment.

The DOT will consider comments received by Jan. 29 when evaluating the final design for the project, said DOT spokesman Andrew Barksdale.

To send comments or seek additional information, contact Rachel Evans, a DOT Division 4 project manager, at P.O. Box 3165, Wilson, N.C., 27895; 252-640-6434; or rcevans@ncdot.gov.

The department has created a webpage, https://www.ncdot.gov/news/public-meetings/Pages/U-4753-2019-01-15.aspx, where information about the project will be posted as it becomes available.

During the meeting, DOT will provide auxiliary aids and services under the Americans with Disabilities Act for disabled persons who wish to participate in the workshop.

Anyone requiring special services should contact Tony Gallagher at 1598 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, N.C., 27699-1598; 919-707-6069; or magallagher@ncdot.gov as early as possible so arrangements can be made.

People who do not speak English or have a limited ability to read, speak or understand English may receive interpretive services upon request prior to the meeting by calling 1-800-481-6494.