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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — With the number of construction projects going on in our area, orange barrels have become a part of the everyday scenery. From bridge repairs to resurfacing roads, there’s a lot of work going on right now. One big project that’s halfway done is expected to relieve congestion between Wilmington and Leland.

Crews are hard at work building the leg of the Wilmington Bypass that will connect US 17 and US 74/76. Construction on this six-mile road started about two years ago. By July 2013, it should be ready for drivers.

Engineers say this $80 million project is a little unique, because it’s a design-build project. That means the contractor and designer worked together to come up with a plan for the project.

“The contractors and the designers know about the project at least a year in advance, where the normal bid process, they don’t know about it until they bid on it, so they have opportunities to kind of build the project in their minds before they get out here, and I think there’s been some benefits to that,” NCDOT Division Construction Engineer Jackson Provost said.

Once this project wraps up in 2013, construction on the final phase of the bypass, which will connect to US 421, should begin shortly after. That project should be finished by 2017 or 2018.

We haven’t seen the last of the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge painting. That should resume Wednesday and end in time for Memorial Day. That means there will be lane closures and even overnight bridge closures.

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