Morrisville Parkway Extension and NC 540 Interchange

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Summer 2019 Construction Update

Good progress is being made and paving operations are anticipated to be in full swing in August. In addition:

  • The roundabout on the west side of the interchange is nearing completion.
  • Grading for the roundabout in the vicinity of Twyla Road is completed with curb and gutter scheduled.
  • Street light installations have started.
  • Overhead sign foundations are being installed.
  • All work associated with the interchange is scheduled to be completed this year with the exception of the new toll site construction recently requested by NCTA.




Spring 2019 Construction Update

After a very wet winter, construction is close to 50 percent complete and work is starting to ramp back up including:

  • ABC stone is being placed on the entire east side of the project, followed by curb and gutter installation and paving scheduled in April and May.
  • The North Carolina Turnpike Authority’s (NCTA) fiber optic trunk line has been relocated, allowing for grading operations to begin on the ramp and loop on the west side
  • The traffic shift has been installed on the southbound lanes of NC 540, including concrete barrier.
  • Over the next four months construction activities will focus on completing the ramp and loop on the west side of the project.
  • Overhead sign and gantry column construction will begin in April/May
  • All work associated with the interchange is scheduled to be completed this year with the exception of the new toll site construction recently requested by NCTA.
  • New toll site construction is scheduled to begin this summer. Timeframes for completion are not currently known.



Winter 2018 Construction Update

Construction is close to 40 percent complete and progress has been slow due to rainy weather.

Construction of Morrisville Parkway, between Twyla Road and Highcroft Drive, is approaching completion with the exception of the final layer of asphalt. Concrete paving at the ramp and loop tie-ins to NC 540 have been completed. Twyla Rd has been rerouted to allow for grading operations east of 540 that will support the eastern bridge approach and roundabout. Grading operations will continue this winter in advance of additional roadway work scheduled for this spring.

road construction photo

road construction photo

road construction photo

Fall 2018 Construction Update

Construction is close to 30 percent complete despite the rainy weather.

Grading and storm drainage are well underway, and the waterline is almost complete. Concrete paving at the ramp and loop tie-ins and should be complete in early September. The main “critical path” activity is rerouting Twyla Rd to begin grading operations for the eastern roundabout. Paving operations are scheduled to begin this fall starting at Highcroft and tying to the rerouted Twyla Rd. 

Morrisville Pkwy Ext. 1


 Morrisville Pkwy Ext. 2

Summer 2018 Construction Update

Grading operations, as well as waterline and storm drainage installation, are ongoing. The project is approximately 20 percent complete. After the July 4 holiday, the contractor is planning to begin paving operations along NC 540 in advance of constructing the loops and ramps that will connect NC 540 to Morrisville Parkway.

540 under construction

Looking East from 540 towards Fryers Gate.

540 under construction

Looking South along 540 towards Apex.

 Tree clearing

Project Background

The Town of Cary is working with local developers and the NCDOT to complete the last 1.83-mile segment of the Morrisville Parkway corridor from NC 55 to Green Level Church Road. The roadway will initially be a two-lane road and include an interchange at NC 540, the Western Wake Expressway.

The Town completed the preliminary designs, the Environmental Assessment (EA) and subsequent Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) documents for Morrisville Parkway widening and the NC 540 Interchange. The documents outline the project details and impacts, and fulfill the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Key items addressed in the document include:

  • Purpose and Need: The purpose of the proposed project is providing increased connectivity and access, as well as additional roadway capacity, within western Cary. The extension that is currently in progress will address the existing deficiency in the connectivity of segments of existing Morrisville Parkway. The interchange will provide Cary travelers better access to NC 540 than the current interchanges located at NC 55 and Green Level West Road. The four-lane widening will provide added capacity to the area roadway network, relieving projected congestion on NC 55 and Green Level Church Road.
  • Alternatives Considered: A full range of alternatives, including the No-Build Alternative, Alternative Modes of Transportation, Transportation Systems Management (TSM) Alternative, Improve Existing Facility Alternative and new location Build Alternative were evaluated for the proposed action. The Build Alternative represents construction of an interchange with NC 540 as well as the widening of the Morrisville Parkway Extension to a four-lane divided facility. The Build Alternative includes the evaluation of three interchange designs presented at the Citizens Informational Workshop in February 2012.
  • Preferred Alternative: The Build Alternative is presented as the Recommended Alternative for the proposed project. The Preferred Build Alternative includes the construction of a partial cloverleaf interchange at NC 540 with ramps and loops in the northwest and southeast quadrants (Alternative C). The preferred alternative meets the purpose and need of the projects with the least impacts to the environment and community.
  • Summary of Impacts: The main impacts of the preferred Build Alternative include the relocation of 7 residences, 6 stream crossings with a combined length of 1,205 feet, 4 wetlands with a combined area of 0.29 acres and 9 residences where noise impacts may need to be mitigated.

Construction Costs and Funding

The estimated construction cost is $18,000,000 including relocation of Duke Energy utility lines. Funding includes $12,500,000 from NCDOT and $3,000,000 from STP-DA funds for a total of $15,500,000. Cary has allocated additional funding needed to construct the project based on current cost estimates.

Construction is scheduled to begin in early 2018 and the connection is anticipated to be in place by the end of 2019.


Kyle Hubert, PE Project Engineer Transportation & Facilities Department Town of Cary
(919) 462-3938