Mecklenburg Commissioners vote to scratch I-77 toll-lane project

Mecklenburg County Commissioners are voting against the controversial I-77 toll lane project.

It's already under construction and set to cost $650 million from a private company, but some believe there is still a chance it can be scratched.

The toll lane project which would stretch for more than 20 miles north of Charlotte is being funded by a Spanish company named Cintra.

Some say a bigger problem is backing out of the 50-year contract which will cost anywhere from $82 to $300 million, according to the state auditor.

NCDOT Chairman Ned Curran says tolls are the most reasonable and financially sound way to help traffic concerns, even though tolls would be controlled by a private company.

"Do I wish we could own every road, control every road, fully?" Curran asked. "Of course I do. But do I also say we're going to have to leverage what we do? Yeah."

The Charlotte City Council will hold a public hearing on the I-77 toll lanes next week. Council members voted Monday night to hold the public hearing Monday, January 11. 

Following the public hearing the council will vote on how to direct it's members of the CRTPO to vote on the toll plan. The final CRTPO vote will take place on January 20.

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