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Hampstead Bypass revised plan still getting complaints

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HAMPSTEAD, NC (WWAY) -- The North Carolina Department of Transportation held a meeting Thursday night to get input on a revised and preliminary plan for the proposed bypass of U.S. 17 around Hampstead.

The newest plan adds an interchange to the original plan that had two. And, with that add, came new complaints.

But, project engineers said they're just trying to provide as much access to the bypass as possible.

After years of planning the proposed U.S. 17 Hampstead bypass, NCDOT engineers at the meeting said people still don't agree on the plan.

"The question is where to put it and how's it going to affect my property," said Jay McInnis, a project engineer.

In 2011, the plan was for just two interchanges, one south on Highway 210 and the other through town. Now, project engineers want to add a third interchange north of Topsail schools.

"Right now, we're looking at ways we can provide access ... because of the amount of traffic that would use the northern-most interchange," McInnis said.

But, some Hampstead residents like Michael Nadeau and Joseph Decicco said they don't think there is enough traffic through Hampstead to warrant three interchanges.

"I've come to question the need for three interchanges for our small town instead of two," Nadeau said.

"I don't know where they got their numbers but it's wrong. It should be re-done," Decicco said.

And, moved altogether according to Decicco.

"Why bring people into Hampstead when they don't want to drive slow at 45 miles an hour. Bring it up north where you have a 55 zone and let's do it," Decicco said.

Project engineers said they will hold a design public hearing in the spring or summer of 2014 to give another update on the Hampstead bypass. Construction is scheduled for 2021.

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Keep Bypass accesses where DOT want to put them

The state DOT is the best qualified entity to figure where to put access routes to the new Hampstead Bypass. I feel the best place to have an access road to the bypass is near MIA-POW Road it gives much of the traffic on HWY 17 North access to the center of Hampstead near business areas and away from residential areas that would be effected more adversely by traffic and noise. Keep it in the busy area of Hampstead. It would give easier access for commercial traffic to there areas for deliveries and commerce and keep the commercial trucks off more of HWY 17 North & South in Hampstead. I think 3 access roads to the Hampstead bypass is a very good idea and access near POW-MIA road is a very good place to have an access road.

Doesn't matter

Doesn't matter how DOT plans this the people will complain about it. That is why it has never been built.