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Asheboro, NC – On Saturday, the North Carolina House Republican Caucus voted to elect their leaders for the next biennium session of the North Carolina General Assembly. Rep. Tim Moore was elected to be the …

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Governor McCrory and Duke University “Welcome Back Veterans” with New Initiative

March 30, 2015 – 10:26 am

Raleigh, N.C. – Governor Pat McCrory is welcoming back veterans with a new joint initiative between the administration’s Division of Veterans Affairs and Duke University. The two-year partnership will focus on increasing mental health services for veterans, military families, and transitioning personnel within North Carolina and will include North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services. 

 

This Week at NCDOT – March 27, 2015

March 27, 2015 – 1:05 pm
This Week at NCDOT – March 27, 2015

RALEIGH — From the North Carolina mountains to the coast, the N.C. Department of Transportation is involved in numerous programs, activities and initiatives in communities throughout the state. The following are highlights from the department this week. They are also featured in our weekly newscast, NCDOT Now, which can be viewed by clicking here.

GoTransit Unveiling
On March 25, NCDOT Secretary Tony Tata, along with Durham Mayor Bill Bell and Raleigh Mayor Pro Tem John Odom, unveiled GoRaleigh, GoDurham and GoTriangle, the new look of public transit serving the Triangle, and all part of a new family of services called GoTransit.  

By rebranding Capital Area Transit, DATA and Triangle Transit under the GoTransit umbrella, each system is able to maintain its uniqueness, while better connecting and unifying the region as a whole. To learn more, visit www.gotransitnc.com.

Division Seven Equipment Roadeo
NCDOT maintenance crews who operate heavy equipment in Alamance, Caswell, Guilford, Orange and Rockingham counties engaged in friendly competition while sharpening their skills at the annual NCDOT Division Seven safety “roadeo,” held on March 25 in Haw River.

Participants got to test their safety awareness and skill levels while maneuvering a dump truck, tractor, backhoe, low-boy trailer or motor grader through obstacle courses that model the real-life scenarios maintenance crews encounter each day on the job.

The overall goals of the roadeo include helping NCDOT workers advance their skills, emphasizing the importance of safety when operating heavy equipment, fostering a sense of team spirit, and recognizing employees who excel at their jobs.

All 14 NCDOT highway divisions hold roadeos annually, with the winners from each division going on to compete against each other in the statewide roadeo in Raleigh on July 21 at the N.C. State Fairgrounds. Division roadeos will take place now through the end of June.

Ribbon Cut on Three New Tour Stops at Bentonville Battlefield Historic Site
NCDOT representatives joined staff from the Department of Cultural Resources on March 19 for a ribbon cutting officially opening three new tour stops constructed at the Bentonville Battlefield in Johnston County.

In partnership with the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources, NCDOT constructed these tour stops at locations along the battlefield, giving visitors a place to safely pull off the road and learn more about the history of what took place there 150 years ago. This was the second time NCDOT has constructed tour stops at this historic site.

NCDOT Mourns Loss of Division Four Employee
NCDOT is mourning the loss of a member of our family this week. William Grey Bailey was performing his technician duties in a work zone on Monday morning in Goldsboro when he was struck by a vehicle that had gone off the road, tragically taking his life. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Millie, their twin 18-month old daughters, Lydia and Vera, and their friends and family.

For more information on NCDOT Now, contact the NCDOT Communications Office at (919) 707-2660.

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Regional Winners of the NCDOT Model Bridge Competition Advance to Finals

March 27, 2015 – 9:58 am
Regional Winners of the NCDOT Model Bridge Competition Advance to Finals

Raleigh — The N.C. Department of Transportation invited all North Carolina middle and high schools to participate in its 16th annual Model Bridge Building Competition. The contest is designed to give students a hands-on opportunity to apply their science, technology, engineering and math skills to a real-world scenario.

The event features teams of students designing and building a model bridge. The bridges are tested by NCDOT engineers, with the engineers and representatives of engineering companies serving as the judges.

The regionals were held at four locations across the state on Friday, March 27, and the winners below have advanced to the finals on April 17 in Raleigh:

Region One:
Middle School – Beaufort Middle School of Beaufort
High School – CamTech High School of Camden

Region Two:
Middle School – Neal STEM Academy of Engineering and Design of Durham
High School – Franklin Academy High School of Wake Forest

Region Three:
Middle School – Westmoore Middle School in Seagrove
High School—North Moore High School in Robbins

Region Four:
Middle School Winner:  Polk County Middle School, Mill Spring, NC
High School Winner:  Polk County High School, Mill Spring, NC

The first place winners in last year’s competition were Franklin Academy High School in Wake Forest and Polk County Middle School in Mills Springs.

This competition is intended to get students excited about STEM courses (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math).  The objectives of the competition are to encourage students to pursue engineering careers and ultimately lead them to positions with NCDOT.

To learn more about the competition check out the Model Bridge Building event video on YouTube, or contact event organizer Gail Herring via email at gherring@ncdot.gov or (919) 707-4442.

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Governor McCrory Applauds Transportation Compromise

March 26, 2015 – 6:31 pm

Raleigh, N.C. – Governor Pat McCrory released the following statement on the gas tax compromise announced by House and Senate leaders today:”This proposal protects and stabilizes gas tax revenue so we can fund important transportation priorities that c…

Contract Awarded For Dredging of Morehead City Harbor Channel

March 25, 2015 – 2:16 pm

Raleigh, N.C. — Efforts to resolve the critical channel maintenance issues at the Port of Morehead City reached a major milestone when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers awarded a contract for maintenance dredging.

 

The contract, awarded last week, is worth approximately $7.9 million and was awarded to Marinex Construction Company of North Charleston, SC. The contract calls for the removal of approximately 725,000 cubic yards of material from the channel.

 

Governor McCrory’s HUB Office to Host Annual Networking Reception & Matchmaking Event

March 25, 2015 – 2:02 pm

Raleigh, N.C. — Governor McCrory’s Office of Small and Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUB), within the Department of Administration, will host a special networking and matchmaking event tomorrow, March 26, 5 – 8 p.m. at NC State University’s McKimmon Conference Center in Raleigh.

 

“This event showcases the talent, ingenuity and resources of many of our underutilized businesses to larger traditional firms who need partners to grow and expand their markets,” Governor McCrory said.

 

NCDOT Ferry Division Accommodates Holiday Travelers With More Hatteras Runs

March 25, 2015 – 10:59 am
NCDOT Ferry Division Accommodates Holiday Travelers With More Hatteras Runs

(MANNS HARBOR) – In preparation for holiday travel over the upcoming Easter and Spring breaks, the North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Ferry Division will be enhancing the schedule on its Hatteras-Ocracoke route between March 31…

Governor McCrory Celebrates State Employees’ Gifts to North Carolina Charities

March 24, 2015 – 5:02 pm

Raleigh, NC – Governor McCrory hosted a recognition reception for organizers, volunteers, and sponsors of the North Carolina State Employees Combined Campaign (SECC) today.

 

Governor McCrory Announces Judicial Nomination

March 24, 2015 – 11:14 am

 

Raleigh, N.C. — Governor Pat McCrory has nominated Charles M. “Casey” Viser of Mecklenburg County for a Special Superior Court Judgeship. The seat was formerly held by Special Superior Court Judge Martin McGee.

 

“Casey Viser served Mecklenburg County with distinction as a District Court Judge and is a well-respected and distinguished litigator. His impending role as a Special Superior Court judge will only further his legacy of commitment and service to his community and the state,” said Governor McCrory.

 

Governor McCrory Announces Business Court Nominee

March 24, 2015 – 11:12 am

Raleigh, N.C. —  Governor Pat McCrory has nominated Michael L. “Mike” Robinson of Forsyth County to become a Business Court Judge.  The seat, formerly a regular Special Superior Court seat once held by Judge Lucy Inman, is a new business court seat authorized by the 2014 Appropriations Act.    

 

“Mike Robinson has distinguished himself as an excellent litigator and as a leader in his community, and I look forward to him serving the state as a Business Court Judge,” said Governor McCrory. 

  

Governor, First Lady “Light the Way” for World Down Syndrome Day

March 23, 2015 – 12:45 pm

Raleigh, N.C. – Governor Pat McCrory and First Lady Ann McCrory will light the Executive Mansion and Western Residence in blue tomorrow after sunset to observe World Down Syndrome Day. The residences will be illuminated until midnight.  

 

This Week at NCDOT – March 20, 2015

March 20, 2015 – 12:51 pm
This Week at NCDOT – March 20, 2015

RALEIGH — From the North Carolina mountains to the coast, the N.C. Department of Transportation is involved in numerous programs, activities and initiatives in communities throughout the state. The following are highlights from the department this week. They are also featured in our weekly newscast, NCDOT Now, which can be viewed here.

National Work Zone Safety Awareness Week
Spring is officially here and along with it comes the unofficial start of construction season for NCDOT. To remind drivers of the importance of staying safe in work zones obeying posted speed limits and paying attention, March 23 through 27 has been named National Work Zone Awareness Week.

The theme of this year’s campaign is “Expect the Unexpected” and focuses on bringing attention not only to the safety of workers in work zones, but also to the safety of drivers and passengers traveling through these areas. According to the Federal Highway Administration, on average 85 percent of deaths in work zone crashes are drivers and passengers in cars.

NCDMV and NCDENR Debut New Exemption for Inspection and Maintenance Program
The Division of Motor Vehicles, in conjunction with the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, will soon debut a new emissions exemption pertaining to the North Carolina Inspection and Maintenance Program.

Starting April 1, if you have a car that is less than three years older than the current model year and has fewer than 70,000 miles, you will not be required to get an emissions inspection. All vehicles will still be subject to a safety inspection.

To learn more and find out which inspection is required for your vehicle, visit the DMV website.

North Carolina State Rail Plan Public Comment Period Ends Saturday
Saturday, March 21, is your last chance to provide feedback on the draft North Carolina State Rail Plan.

The rail plan is designed to transform transportation, economic, land use and other data into a strategic freight and passenger investment plan for North Carolina. The draft plan was released earlier this year and features several recommendations for freight and passenger rail, as well as safety and funding. Some of the recommendations include:
•    Conducting a study to identify a potential new rail intermodal site in eastern North Carolina; and
•    Adding more runs to the Raleigh to Charlotte Amtrak services to enhance mobility.

Passenger and freight rail enhancements are an important part of the Governor’s 25-Year Vision, and in turn, NCDOT’s draft improvement program for the next 10 years.

To learn more and provide feedback on the rail plan, visit ncbytrain.org.

2015 N.C. Aviation Art Contest Winners Announced
More than 549 inspired young artists representing 97 towns and 58 schools across the state submitted their take on the theme “World Air Games” through the NCDOT Division of Aviation’s 2015 North Carolina Aviation Art Contest.

Students were asked to create a picture that captures the excitement of the World Air Games taking place in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. A judging panel has selected the winning entries, which will advance to compete on the national and international levels.

All children who live in or attend school in North Carolina were invited to submit their interpretations of this year’s theme. The top three entries in each age group have been sent to Washington, D.C. to be judged in the national competition. The artwork of the national winners will be sent to Switzerland to compete in the international competition.

Judges looked for originality, adherence to the theme and overall aesthetics. Judges took into consideration the artist’s creative use of this year’s theme in relation to the aviation world.

Click here to view our photo gallery of the winning entries.

For more information on NCDOT Now, contact the NCDOT Communications Office at (919) 707-2660.

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Maiden Man Arrested on Facebook Threats

March 19, 2015 – 9:26 am

Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office News Release Maiden Man Arrested For Facebook Threats on Law Enforcement, Probation…

Packrite, LLC Expansion to Add 100 New Jobs in Guilford County

March 17, 2015 – 4:18 pm

Raleigh, N.C. -  Governor Pat McCrory, N.C. Commerce Secretary John E. Skvarla III and the Economic Development Partnership of N.C. announced today that  Packrite, LLC will expand its operations in Guilford County and create 100 new jobs over the next five years.  The company plans to invest $8.9 million in building and equipment in the city of High Point over the course of the first year.

 

Governor McCrory Signs Legislation Strengthening Environmental Protections

March 17, 2015 – 2:33 pm

Raleigh, NC – Governor Pat McCrory signed legislation this evening that amends several areas of environmental law. The legislation, House Bill 157, was introduced by Rep. Pat McElraft and Rep. Rick Catlin and passed the General Assembly today.

 

Historic Tax Credits Gaining Support

March 17, 2015 – 2:26 pm

Raleigh, NC – Governor Pat McCrory and Cultural Resources Secretary Susan Kluttz recently continued their tour throughout North Carolina to highlight the successful efforts to revitalize urban downtowns, main streets and rural communities through the historic tax credit program. As the tour continues across the state, support for restoring this  important preservation initiative is gaining momentum.

 

Unanimous Court Ruling Defends North Carolina Constitution

March 16, 2015 – 4:44 pm

Raleigh, N.C. – Governor Pat McCrory issued a statement following the unanimous ruling by a three-judge panel which upheld the Governor’s challenge involving the use of commissions to perform regulatory responsibilities assigned to the Executive Branch.

 

Governor McCrory to Testify Before U.S. House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee

March 16, 2015 – 4:15 pm

Raleigh, N.C. – Governor Pat McCrory will testify before the U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure hearing entitled “Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill: Laying the Foundation for U.S. Economic Growth and Job Creation Part II” on Tuesday. In his capacity as a member of the Executive Committee of the National Governors Association, Governor McCrory will join Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker and Wyoming Department of Transportation Director John Cox to offer testimony.

NCDOT Celebrates Arrival of Raleigh’s First Train 175 Years Ago This Week

March 16, 2015 – 9:35 am
NCDOT Celebrates Arrival of Raleigh’s First Train 175 Years Ago This Week

RALEIGH – Nearly two centuries ago, Raleigh was a very different place. The year was 1840. The state’s capital – now a bustling metropolis of shopping, restaurants and businesses – was a destination largely isolated from the rest of the state, separated by long journeys over unpaved roads and a lack of a navigable river for trade and transport.   
This all changed on March 21, 175 years ago this week, when the first train chugged into town – a wood-burning steam locomotive christened the “Tornado” traveling on newly built wooden rails. With the arrival of the Raleigh and Gaston Railroad, a predecessor of what is today CSX Transportation, Raleigh was now connected to places like Richmond, Virginia that had once taken two days by horse or stage coach to reach. Overnight, Raleigh’s new rail connection began the transformation from a small town seat of state government to a fast-growing commercial, industrial and education center.
Just as it did almost 200 years ago, the Raleigh and Gaston route today remains a key rail corridor. CSXT, which has grown to become one of the largest transportation companies in the United States, continues to provide daily freight service over the line, which serves as the origination and termination point of millions of dollars in products annually. The corridor is also designated as the primary path for the future Southeast High Speed Rail Corridor between Raleigh and Virginia.
“The introduction of the railroad revolutionized travel and freight movement throughout our state and the nation,” said N.C. Department of Transportation Secretary Tony Tata. “Nearly two centuries later, rail continues to play an important role in North Carolina’s multimodal transportation system, as well as supporting job creation, economic development and commerce activities that are critical to the future vitality of our state.”
“Railroads have played a significant role in the development of the United States, probably more than any other enterprise,” said Cindy Sanborn, executive vice president-operations for CSXT. “From their earliest development of routes from eastern ports to inland settlements, railroads today are safe, reliable and fuel efficient conveyors of freight that drive North American commerce. CSX is proud to participate in acknowledging the first train to the great city of Raleigh and to have played a role in the city’s growth and prosperity.”
“Railroads have historically played an important role in the growth and development of the City of Raleigh,” said City of Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane. Rail has been a cornerstone of our infrastructure and has helped support the economic vitality of the region.  As the city looks to the future, rail will remain part of the city’s foundation for a multi-modal transportation network.”
The N.C. Department of Transportation invites all North Carolinians to celebrate this special anniversary by riding the Piedmont and Carolinian trains at a reduced fare. Just book at the following Amtrak.com page for 30% off the purchase of a companion ticket when you purchase one full-price ticket on Saturday, March 21. NCDOT also invites the public to come by the Raleigh station for birthday cake and punch.

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This Week at NCDOT – March 13, 2015

March 13, 2015 – 12:58 pm
This Week at NCDOT – March 13, 2015

RALEIGH — From the North Carolina mountains to the coast, the N.C. Department of Transportation has numerous programs, activities and initiatives in communities throughout the state. The following are highlights from the department this week. They are also featured in our weekly newscast, NCDOT Now, which can be viewed by clicking here. You can also download the episode by clicking here.

Halifax County Amtrak Accident
On Monday, North Carolina’s Amtrak train 80, the Carolinian, was involved in an accident South of Roanoke Rapids in Halifax County. The passenger train was heading north from Charlotte to New York when it collided with a tractor-trailer on the tracks at the N.C. 903 and U.S. 301 rail crossing.

NCDOT Division Four staff rushed to the scene to quickly set up detours and reroute traffic. Transportation Secretary Tony Tata also traveled to the site along with NCDOT Rail Division leaders to meet with the train crew and first responders, lend support and thank them for their quick response. While there, Tata checked on passengers at the Halifax Agricultural Center as they waited to board buses to complete their journey, as well as visited with staff at Halifax Regional Medical Center.

NCDOT is continuing to work with authorities who are investigating the cause of the crash.

Pothole Repair
Crews across the state are working to fill potholes, which usually form during winter months when moisture seeps into cracks in the pavement, freezes, expands and then thaws. As traffic loosens the pavement, it eventually creates a pothole.

Since most asphalt plants are not operating during winter months and “hot mix” asphalt is not available, crews are using “cold patch,” as well as spray patchers, to fix the holes as an interim treatment. “Cold patch” is a premix that NCDOT stockpiles for winter pothole response. Crews will perform permanent patches with hot mix when it is available later this spring.

If you see a pothole you can report it by calling 1-877-368-4968 or by filling out a form online at www.ncdot.gov/contact. Click on “County Contacts” on the left side of your screen and then select your county.

Crews will prioritize repair work based on the size, depth and location of the pothole.

Model Bridge Building Competition
The regionals for the NCDOT Model Bridge Building Competition have been rescheduled for Friday, March 27, after recent snow and ice caused the department to postpone the event.

The competition is an educational opportunity for middle and high school students to learn more about the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

“I think events such as the model bridge competition, and the job shadowing events that we do give students a much broader perspective of careers within transportation,” said NCDOT Office of Education Initiatives Director Ashley Goolsby.

For more information on the Model Bridge Building Competition, visit the NCDOT Office of Education Initiatives website.

Passenger Ferry Test Runs
NCDOT will soon begin test runs for passenger ferry service between Hatteras and Ocracoke village. These runs will help determine how long the voyage would take, how much fuel is needed and ultimately if passenger ferry service is a viable option.

NCDOT commissioned a feasibility study last year to help solve summertime congestion on the Hatteras Inlet route. The test runs will take place May 4 and 5 on a catamaran-style ferry that carries 150 passengers. The study is scheduled to be completed by December.

For more information on NCDOT Now, contact the NCDOT Communications Office at (919) 707-2660.

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