The controversial Monroe connector-bypass project is one step closer to becoming a reality.
On Monday, North Carolina Department of Transportation Secretary Gene Conti and North Carolina Turnpike Authority Executive Director David Joyner signed the $367.7 million design-build contract for the 19.7-mile toll road. The contract has been awarded to Monroe Bypass Constructors, a joint venture of North Charleston, S.C.-based United Infrastructure Group, Monroe-based Boggs Paving, Lake City, Fla.-based Anderson Columbia Co. and Baltimore-based lead design firm Rummel, Klepper & Kahl.
Last week, the NCTA sold bonds needed to construct, operate and maintain the toll road, enabling the design-build contract to be awarded.
Still on the to-do list: the right of way process, including title work, relocation planning and assistance, appraisals and negotiations.
Monroe Bypass Constructors and the NCTA will host a comprehensive community workshop from 4 to 8 p.m. Dec. 5 at the Union County Agricultural Center, 3230-D Presson Road, in Monroe. During the workshop, those interested in reviewing project designs and learning more about the right of way process can meet the design-build and right of way teams.
Environmentalists opposed to the project claim the government misled the public about the impacts the toll road would have on the environment.