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What is meant by the U.S. 17 expansion from Wilmington to Jacksonville?

Ken Little

Q. What is meant by the U.S. 17 expansion from Wilmington to Jacksonville? Does this mean it will be expanded to six lanes? Are they doing it in stages? When will the work be completed?

A. There are a number of components to the U.S. 17 expansion project, said Patrick J. Riddle, planning engineer with Division 3 of the N.C. Department of Transportation.

None are immediate N.C. DOT priorities or are likely to be completed this decade.

A feasibility study on the expansion project was completed October 2012.

The study area is U.S. 17 from the Wilmington Bypass at the Porter’s Neck interchange to N.C. 50 in Holly Ridge, Riddle said.

In the feasibility study, “there are build alternatives that have a section of U.S. 17 widened to six lanes from just north of Hampstead to N.C. 210, but there is not an identified TIP project with this scope,” Riddle said.

TIP is an acronym for state Transportation Improvement Program. Once such projects are identified, they are assigned priorities, according to the N.C. DOT website.

In the U.S. 17 from Wilmington to Jacksonville segment, DOT proposes converting U.S. 17 to a “super-street” from Washington Acres Road in Hampstead to Sloop Point Road, north of Hampstead.

Construction is scheduled for 2021.

The Hampstead Bypass from the Wilmington Bypass to U.S. 17, just north of Hampstead, is an “unfunded” project, Riddle said.

Riddle said earlier in January there are no immediate plans for the Hampstead Bypass to be part of the expansion of U.S. 17.

According to a Dec. 15 NCDOT document, the Hampstead Bypass “is programmed for planning and environmental study only to expedite delivery of a new (TIP) project.”

Here’s a link to the Hampstead Bypass project: www.ncdot.gov/projects/us17hampsteadbypass

For an overview of major proposed N.C. DOT projects, go to:



AP: Expansion of Wilmington-to-Jacksonville route in N.C. funding plan

Will the Hampstead bypass be part of the U.S. 17 expansion?

Why are they clearing land on the northwest corner of I-140 and U.S. 17?


User-contributed question by:
D. Wayne

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