The NC Department of Transportation continues work on the U.S. 70 corridor between Raleigh and Morehead City- which will ultimately become part of Interstate 42. Most recently, the DOT has made announcements regarding the Kinston section of the project- R-2553 Kinston Bypass. Public information indicates that the DOT has chosen the preferred route seen in Orange on the following map:
The entire Kinston Bypass will be 22 miles and includes a 6.5-mile stretch that will be a new roadway, with the speed limit set at 70 mph. The entire project is expected to cost $379.1 million. Of that, $48,850,000 will be allocated for property acquisition. At present, the DOT intends to start acquiring property in 2023 and begin construction in 2027.
As additional sections of US 70 are completed, transportation experts predict that the commute time between Raleigh and Morehead City may be reduced as much as one hour. The DOT has indicated that improvements to US 70 are necessary to support growth at the Port of Morehead City and to allow for better evacuation from coastal areas during hurricane events.
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