Interstate 85, Yadkin River bridge top list of local transportation priorities

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Staff report
Widening Interstate 85 and replacing the highway’s bridge over the Yadkin River top a list of priorities adopted recently by a committee of the Cabarrus-Rowan Metropolitan Planning Organization.
The Transportation Advisory Committee plans for regional transportation needs including highway, transit, bicycle and pedestrian projects, as required under federal law. Its recommendations go the N.C. Department of Transportation and are considered as the state plans transportation projects.
The committee’s latest list of priorities will be considered as the state develops its 2011-2017 Transportation Improvement Program, the plan by which the state coordinates construction projects and funding.
The committee’s highest priorities for Rowan and Cabarrus counties include widening I-85 from N.C. 73 in Cabarrus to exit 68 in China Grove, with a new interchange at Old Beatty Ford Road; widening the highway from the N.C. 49/U.S. 29 connector to N.C. 73 in Cabarrus; and widening the interstate from north of exit 81 to exit 87, including replacement of the Yadkin River bridge and preservation of the historic Wil-Cox Bridge on U.S. 29.
In Rowan, priorities also include a grade separation and extension of Kimball Road in China Grove and Landis to I-85. In Cabarrus, the list also includes work on George Liles Parkway from Weddington Road to U.S. 29.
In setting priorities, a press release said, the committee considers whether projects: promote the safe and efficient management, operation and development of transportation system; serve the mobility needs of people and freight; include public participation and partnership; foster economic growth and development; and minimize the negative effects of transportation including air quality.
The committee is made up of elected officials from the governments of Rowan and Cabarrus counties and their municipalities.
For more information about the Metropolitan Planning Organization, log on to To download complete priority lists for each county, go to for the Rowan County list and for Cabarrus County.