Transportations bonds include money for Oakdale Road upgrades

by Andrew Batten

OAKDALE – On Nov. 2 Charlotte residents will vote on a $156.6 million Transportation Bond that will help pay for improvements to Oakdale Road.

The Oakdale Road farm-to-market will improve 2.4 miles of road outlined in road on the map above.

The $8 million project will transform Oakdale Road from its meandering two lanes into a four-lane boulevard complete with bicycle lanes, landscaped medians and sidewalks. The project, known as a farm-to-market, will rebuild about 2.5 miles from Brookshire Boulevard to Dale Avenue.

The new Oakdale Road will not only benefit motorists, but also pedestrians and cyclists, said Derrel Poole, an engineering project manager for the Charlotte Department of Transportation.

“On the current road sometimes the lanes are kind of narrow, so with the new project you wind up with wider lanes,” Pool said. “We will have streets that accommodate not just motorists but pedestrians and cyclists.”

Other improvements include adding curbs and gutters, storm drainage infrastructure, parallel parking and landscaping the in the medians.

“The medians will be able to accommodate large trees that will add to the overall aesthetics,” Pool said. Those large trees can add a calming effect to road because of the large canopy. It’s very pleasant and people take their time and don’t race down the road.”

Engineers are about half done with the projects design phase, a process that has been slowed by residents’ concerns.

“We are looking at trying to minimize the impacts as far as the amount of right-of-way that we would have to take by revisiting the size of the planting strip, the length of the medians and using intermittent medians instead of long medians.”

Residents in the area can expect the design phase of the project to take at least another two years before crews break ground.

For more information on the projected, visit www.charmeck.org/city/charlotte/epm/Projects.

The city’s 2010 Transportation Bond also includes improvements to Johnston-Oehler Road, Brevard Street, Eighth Street, Beatties Ford Road, Idlewild Road and North Tryon Street.

Bond money will be used for improvements to the following intersections:  Ballantyne Commons and Elm Lane, Scaleybark and South Boulevard, McKee Road and Provide Road, and Arrowood Road and Nations Ford Road.

The bond also includes $5 million for roadway improvements, streetscape, and other infrastructure for area project plans in areas such as University City, Catawba, Steele Creek and the Independence Corridor.

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