RTA Designates Upgrade of US 1/Capital Blvd as Top Freeway Priority


RTA held a special Steering Committee meeting this week to discuss the future of US 1 / Capital Boulevard. It was noted in the meeting that US 1 is the primary artery into the capital city from the north, and that NCDOT has long proposed the upgrade of the sections north of I-540 to a freeway. In addition, the City of Raleigh has a companion, multiway boulevard project that would create a multimodal gateway along Capital between I-540 and I-440 with all stoplights removed from the center lanes.

The Steering Committee focused its discussion on the proposed NCDOT improvements to US 1 / Capital Boulevard north of I-540. The project has faced multiple delays due to issues such as a lack of funding, inflation, improved cost estimates, scope changes and competing other regional priorities. After a robust discussion, the RTA Steering Committee endorsed a motion to designate the proposed upgrade to freeway of US 1 / Capital Boulevard between I-540 and Wake Forest as our top regional freeway priority, with companion support for advancing the corridor vision of removing all stoplights along US 1 / Capital Boulevard between the I-440 Raleigh beltline and Franklin County.

The regional business community will immediately increase our focus on identifying and advancing a multimodal freeway solution for Capital Boulevard in northern Wake County with our local, county, regional, statewide, and federal partners. In addition, this effort will be elevated as part of the upcoming Freeway, Arterial, Street and Tactical (FAST) 2.0 study where we are looking to make all of our major freeways and regional boulevards — including Capital Boulevard — “transit ready.”

The RTA Steering Committee further clarified that the organization’s top overall “priority one” remains the identification of sustainable funding for essential growth at RDU International Airport.

The upgrade of Capital Boulevard between I-540 and Wake Forest will remain our top regional freeway priority until it is fully funded, committed, and on a glide path to construction.

Let’s get moving,


Joe Milazzo II, PE
RTA executive director

RTA is the voice of the regional business community on transportation


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