A contract for the second phase of the $2.2 billion tolled expressway outer loop around Raileigh, North Carolina, has been awarded.
Flatiron-Fred Smith Company Joint Venture was awarded a $450 million contract for the first of two sections of the second phase. The ultimate goal of the project is to complete the 540 Outer Loop in southern Wake County.
Work continues on the project’s first phase, which was awarded in December 2018 to Lane Blythe Construction Joint Venture of Charlotte. The first phase is scheduled to open in late spring of 2024, extending the Triangle Expressway 18 miles from N.C. 55 to I-40, according to the North Carolina Department of Transportation and the N.C. Turnpike Authority.
The second phase will eventually close the loop. The contractor will build a six-lane all-electric toll road, extending the Triangle Expressway from south of Rock Quarry Road to Interstate 87/U.S. 64/U.S. 264. The contract for the final section is scheduled to be awarded later this year. Construction on the second phase is set to begin in 2024 and open to traffic in 2028.
The overall project extends the Triangle Freeway 28 miles south and east of Raleigh to connect with the existing 18.8-mile N.C. 540, which became the state’s first modern toll road in 2012, according to the N.C. Turnpike Authority.
Once completed, the new toll road will connect several towns and cities and ease congestion on I-440, I-40, N.C. 42, N.C. 55 and Ten Ten Road, among other local roads, according to NCDOT. The Complete 540 project will ultimately link Apex, Cary, Clayton, Garner, Fuquay-Varina, Holly Springs and Raleigh.