BEAUFORT — Construction of a roundabout at the intersection of Live Oak Street and Highway 101 could start late in the calendar year, according to N.C. Department of Transportation Division Project Manager Rachelle Beauregard.
Ms. Beauregard has worked on the project since its early planning stages.
While the project is still in a planning stage, officials are focusing on finalizing right-of-way acquisition plans, according to Ms. Beauregard.
“We anticipate those being complete toward the end of the month and into early February,” she said, adding that right-of-way acquisition would begin next month.
Adjacent property owners should start receiving notification letters soon.
The effort has been underway for a number of years, according to Ms. Beauregard, who said NCDOT’s Rural Planning Organization got in contact with the town to determine what kind of project they wanted completed in Beaufort.
“They put together what project they wanted to bring forward in their long-range transportation plans,” Ms. Beauregard said.
Officials had to choose from a number of possible plans, which included a roundabout with multiple lanes. Currently, project officials are planning a single-lane roundabout.
“The purpose of the proposed project is to improve mobility at the intersection of Live Oak Street (US 70) and NC 101,” according to NCDOT.
“The roundabout would improve traffic flow for through traffic on Live Oak Street and reduce delays in traffic turning on and off of NC 101.”
The project is estimated to cost $1,116,000, though Ms. Beauregard said these figures are based on a 2018 estimate. Construction, at $816,000 accounts for the bulk of the project’s cost, while costs related to right-of-way acquisition and utilities are expected to come in at $200,000 and $100,000, respectively.
Ms. Beauregard said, while the state will handle the majority of the costs, Beaufort is expected to make some additions, like adjacent sidewalks.
“It’s a state-funded project,” Ms. Beauregard said. “The town has cost-share when it comes to certain criteria for utilities or improvements, such as adding sidewalks and things of that nature.”
The timeline for the project is not yet concrete.
“February is when we expect land owners might be getting contacted,” Ms. Beauregard said. “Right now we plan to (start the construction bidding process) in October of 2020.”
Ms. Beauregard added that while it is largely dependent on the individual contractor, she is confident construction will start soon after the bidding process is complete.
Contact Dean-Paul Stephens at 252-726-7081, ext. 232; email Dean@thenewstimes.com; or follow on Twitter @DeanPEStephens.