I-77 contractor fined $1.36M for extended lane closure

- The contractor in charge of various overnight closures on Interstate-77 is facing a hefty fine, $1.35 million, for delaying a closure that caused backups for hours.

Sugar Creek Construction said equipment issues caused the delay. 

At the same time this fine was handed down - big questions surround the future of the I-77 Toll Lane Project. A review of the contract still ongoing. 

FOX 46 Charlotte has reported on the damaged cars, dust clouds and deteriorating road. Drivers have grown increasingly frustrated over the last year, as I-77 toll lane construction continues to bring more headaches. 

The firm reviewing the toll lane project continues to encourage input from drivers. So far, most of those comments have a similar tune. 

"We want to cancel it because of X, Y, and Z. We are focusing on the national on why the cancelation might be a solution, and what we find is that what we want to replace it with is where we need to focus on." 

RelatedFOX46 confronts Gov. Cooper on I-77 toll lane concerns

FOX 46 Charlotte uncovered Mercator Advisors, the firm reviewing the contract, once worked together with Cintra on a project in Texas more than 10 years ago. A viewer emailed the station worried there could possibly be conflict of interest. 

FOX 46 Charlotte took that concern to Jim Taylor, a principal with Mercator Advisor LLC. 

"By example, we are coming to these public meetings so we can show people that we are going and we are hearing their input. That is the best way to demonstrate it," Taylor said. 

The current review of the Toll Lane contract was encouraged by Governor Roy Cooper. AS the review pushes forward, and problems along I-77 continue, FOX 46 Charlotte's Caroline Fountain caught up with the governor to see if he's aware of drivers continues frustrations. 

Reporter: "Governor, I had one last question. Did you receive a pavement marker crate from Representative Bradford and if so why did you..."

Gov. Cooper: "I was not aware of that, but I do know that my office is getting in touch with him and talking with him about it and working to say."

A final report about the review of the I-77 contract should be complete by the end of the summer. 

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