Leland traffic a mess for many

Tags: , , , , , ,

Submitted: Tue, 08/26/2014 - 9:53pm
Updated: Wed, 08/27/2014 - 3:21pm

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — There is no doubt about it; sitting in traffic is a pain. A pain folks driving between Leland and Wilmington know all too well lately.

It’s the only way into Wilmington, a route many use daily to go to work, school, and appointments. But recently traffic jams on US 17/74/76 have become the norm for many drivers.

“It sometimes is a hassle, especially if we have to get into town quick,” Donald McClintock said.

“Majority of the time, it’s nothing wrong,” Elizabeth Harrison said. “Somebody maybe pulled off the road, and they just being nosy, and it just backs the traffic up.”

Harrison says a 15-minute drive to work can take her 40 minutes or more.

“And then the job tell you, ‘well you need to leave early,’ so. But you don’t ever know how it’s going to be when you get out there,” Harrison added.

It’s a problem NC DOT Assistant Engineer Wanda James says they are trying to fix.

“There’s not much we can do while we are doing this construction,” James explained. “The whole reason why we’re constructing the project is to alleviate some of that congestion.”

She says until the causeway widening project is done, drivers just need to be patient and cautious.

“Be careful when you’re driving out there,” James said. “Pay attention to what you are doing. Make sure you are looking at traffic instead of looking at the work that we’re doing.”

James says the causeway project should be done in November 2016.

She says it will add one lane to US 74-76 in each direction between 421 and the first Leland exit.


  • Jane Crowder says:

    Does anyone remember when it was two lanes through Leland into Wilmington and you had to go through Belville? When we got the new four lanes we thought “YEA!!!” Our traffic problems have been solved….Then growth came and we have been growing ever since. With growth, we have issues. And unfortunately the traffic is the issue again, and I think this time worse…. But it will get better, but not today or tomorrow… Everyone that travels the causeway daily has got to be patient and be more courteous of your fellow drivers. Don’t rubber neck, don’t try to eat the bumper of the car ahead of you, don’t just ignore a car running out of a lane and not let them get in front of you, and don’t slam on breaks for NO REASON….. Be a defensive and courteous driver, leave a little earlier if possible and remember that you are not the only one sitting in traffic for an hour. There are a whole bunch more….

  • GRR says:

    I remember the two lanes through Belville very well Jane. It was a nightmare especially in the afternoons. You are absolutely correct about the drivers needing to be patient and courteous. Its going to be a long process but in the end it will be for the better.

  • 4564 says:

    NOVEMBER 2016??!!??!!

    For an extra lane???

    By then we will need a whole nother bridge.

    We already do.

    Hurry the heck up and finish I-140.

    And build the bridge from Independence.

    Or a stupid tunnel.

    November 2016? That’s nuts.

  • Pat Batleman says:

    It’s not just an extra lane. Two new bridges will be installed over the Brunswick River. One new bridge will be installed over Aligator Creek at the Y before 421. The other bridge over Aligator Creek heading south will not be replaced but will be rehabbed. The I-140 is scheduled to be completed a year later in 2017. Relief is coming. Meanwhile, Town of Leland is suggesting that the speed limit be lowered by 5 mph in the construction zone to try to reduce the possibility of accidents.

  • no tunnel says:

    you have never lived in an area with tunnels. Think traffic is fubar’ed now, put a tunnel in…..

  • Kady says:

    Yeah what happened to November 2015, that is what they had said before, how did it get changed to a whole extra year on there???

  • guest45 says:

    News flash for you Miss Wanda James, you people in the DOT are a pathetic excuse for any task involving common sense, for one thing Leland should have never been allowed to build and jam up 17/74 without adequate precautions in place, under no way should they have been allowed to just dump the traffic straight on to 17, they should have put infrastructure in place to put their traffic onto 74, and then the next big mistake you people made was allowing the bypass of Leland to 74 to be completed before the road from 74 to 421 was completed first, that way the traffic on 74 would have been able to avoid both the bridges that are now causing a jam up, see how simple this really is DOT?

    The next thing that should be eliminated is raising the bridges, there is no logical reason to ever raise those bridges again, the port is below them and any ship that can not pass under those bridges should have to unload at the port, another problem solved, see how easy this is DOT

    And the last thing and the easiest is what a pitiful excuse Brunswick County has for Emergency Management, anytime there is a traffic problem with 17/74 there is a bunch of white collar empployees on emergency management riding around, sitting in restaurants, and just plain hiding, let them get their lazy butts out of their air conditioned vehicles and get out there and clear it up, put those deputies out there directing traffic and not just standing around jawing at these traffic jams, get this traffic moving, if this county can not handle a little traffic flow then they sure can not handle any type of emergency!

  • Another news flash says:

    Only problem is, the Cutter Diligence docks north of the Cape fear bridge. And also different companies have different docks. North of the Cape fear and Isabel Holmes is numerous fuel yards and tank farms. And in Vista for trop and southern states have small docks there. I guess for the sake of you not being late we could close those docks, shut down the plants and lay everyone off. We all have jobs we have to do. My job is coming to save you when your late for work, drive erratically, and hit someone. I’ll be there! And also…I don’t work in brunswick.

  • Bernieyantz says:

    I am a resident of Brunswick Co. And also have had experience building roads. In my opinion they need to get 140 done that would help alleviate a lot of the traffic issues they have. I believe DOT gets started on one thing and never follows through for whatever the excuse. And let’s not get started with the traffic drivers are not courteous at all, they see the traffic backing up and instead of just falling in line they create more issues by trying to get in front of everyone. Then those that come from the memorial bridge should stay in the left Lane giving those merging a chance to merge. If everyone to self centered to pay attention! I try real hard not to go to Wilmington except once a month because traffic so bad and I send all that ask where to go from the Holden Beach area to go to Myrtle Beach because traffic is so bad.


    Only 2 or 3 more years of this nonsense…the widening of the causeway would NOT have been necessary if the state had put these resources on the final leg of I-140 bypass…instead they are piddling along on both projects, 2 or 3 years out…With the 140 bypass this causeway widening would NOT have been necessary, hence the accidents will continue-be safe folks :(

  • kzpony says:

    You could lower the speed limit to 20mph and it won’t solve the problem. The problem is that instead of proceeding with i140 to 74 to take the traffic off of the interchanges and bridges between Wilmington and Leland, they totally start a disconnected span from 74 to 17, which won’t do one thing to help, and on top of that, throw in a major construction zone into it on the road between the bridges and Leland. Uneven shoulders that grab your tires, some kind of glossy agent that is slippery and so glossy that when the sun hits it in the morning it blinds you, and concrete barriers. Now, add in people that have to be at work on time or pick up their kids before a certain time in the evenings. Also add in tourists trying to get from I40 to Myrtle Beach or Brunswick County beaches or into Wilmington. Also add in a plethora of 18 wheelers and oil tankers and construction vehicles. There you have it. Recipe for disaster exacerbated by poor planning in the first place. People of both counties need to pray hard that no major storm heads our way that calls for evacuation because there is no way we could get out. There are going to be wrecks every day for a long time to come.

  • LelandGal says:

    Lowering the Speed limit isn’t the problem… They build houses in Leland, Yankees move in them. They get jobs in Wilmington, drive over the roads with us Southerners and the roads have to be made bigger,, Yankees complain and want things like it is up North and we are down South. It used to be nice to drive to Wilmington for shopping, eating out or visiting the beaches,,, NOT ANY MORE…When road construction starts it needs to finish before a new one starts.You can’t even turn around on 74/76 by the NorthWest Park any more.. They could have done that work in a month but NOOOOOOOo it takes several months…

  • Video guest says:

    It would help if the Traffic View cameras around Wilmington were working – especially the ones looking at the bridge traffic. I try to check them either on-line or using their ap before leaving work to drive across the bridge & for the past couple of weeks ALL the cameras around Wilmington are down – no visibility. If I could see the traffic jammed, I could elect to delay my departure & adding my car to the mess.

  • jj says:

    DOT has always done a poor job in the Wilmington Area. If they would have continue work on I140 and completed it years ago it would remove a lot of the traffic that is having to go through the bottle neck.

    If this was Raleigh they would be working 24/7 getting it done.

  • Puddintane says:

    I would love to see the speed limit lowered to about 45 with all the construction going on. Most folks would ignore it however.
    Folks need to learn how to merge correctly. Don’t just stop and try to enter thru traffic ‘perpendicularly’…RIDE OUT THE TAPER!!! That’s what it is there for. At the end of the taper, the thru-traffic will have to let you in…if they’re nice ;)
    Also a lesson in not entering an intersection unless you can safely get all the way through is in order as well. It just makes things worse when the light changes and the opposite traffic can’t get through. WAIT YOUR TURN!!!
    Lastly, the I-140 should have been completed before DOT even THOUGHT about widening the thoroughfare between Leland and the CF Memorial…DUMB, DUMB, DUMB!!!

Leave a Reply