Judge's decision on NC bypass expected this week

CHARLOTTE, NC (AP) -- A federal judge's ruling is expected soon on a $720 million bypass around the Charlotte area for one of the few North Carolina roads that stretches from the mountains to the sea.

The Charlotte Observer reports that both the North Carolina Turnpike Authority and the Southern Environmental Law Center expect a ruling this week.

A trio of environmental groups has sued to stop the 20-mile road project in Union County which would be the Charlotte area's first modern toll road. The groups claim an environmental impact study was biased toward building the Monroe Connector-Bypass and failed to seriously consider cheaper alternatives, such as upgrades to
US 74.

The state has defended its studies for the project, which could open by the end of 2015.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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