WBTV Speak Out Editorial: A Troubled Road Ahead

WBTV Speak Out Editorial: A Troubled Road Ahead

"Speak Out" is an expression of opinion from the Editorial Board of WBTV, and is presented by General Manager, Scott Dempsey.

Construction moves forward on the future toll lanes along I-77, despite an ongoing battle to try and kill the project altogether.
That battle has played out in other states, where Cintra – the company that's building the lanes here – has operated toll roads.
A recent WBTV investigation into those roads revealed some troubling concerns.
In Indiana, skyrocketing tolls and fees led to a decline in cars on the roads…leading to a drop in revenue.
To make up for that, Cintra’s subsidiary raised the price of tolls before eventually declaring bankruptcy.

A similar thing happened in Chicago, where declining ridership meant rising tolls and financial troubles, before Cintra sold its rights to a 99-year lease.
And in Texas, Cintra currently owns a highway that parallels a free state-run interstate. When our reporter drove that toll road, it was virtually empty.
So here’s an obvious question:  Who dropped that ball when it came to investigating Cintra’s track record BEFORE the NCDOT hired them for the job?
You wouldn’t hire a contractor for your home without checking out their references.
So why didn’t the state do the proper research before signing a multi-billion dollar contract?
Our State Legislators are the only ones who can stop the I-77 toll lane project now.
Let your voice be heard before it’s too late.

Tell us what YOU think. SpeakOut@wbtv.com