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Cornelius News

New Exit 27 heads up town’s legislative priorities

Photo by Jason Benavides

March 19. By Dave Vieser. Funds to plan and design a new Exit 27 at Westmoreland Road head up the 2024 legislative agenda adopted by the Cornelius Town Board last night.

The Town adopts a legislative agenda every year to identify our prioritie. Elected officials and staff use them to communicate with state officials on matters that have a significant impact on Cornelius.

This year, the agenda was accompanied by a letter from Christopher Bowe of Atrium Health, who said that a new Exit 27 means a great deal to the $250 million-plus project, improving access for patients and emergency vehicles.

The specific priority items:

—$9.5 million for planning & design for a future Westmoreland Road Interchange (Exit 27, I-77) for regional economic development, improvement to the transportation network, and improving emergency and patient access to the new Atrium hospital.

—$1.2 million for the hiring of 12 new full-time Firefighters plus associated operational costs allowing the Town to continue the transition to a full-time career department.

—$1 million for replacing Cornelius Fire Department’s radios that are nearing end of life.

—$1.5 million to improve pedestrian safety at the intersection of NC 115/Catawba Ave.. This will accommodate increased pedestrian activity in the downtown Cornelius area.

—$3.5 million to construct a Town Recreation Center on the campus of the soon-to-be rebuilt Cornelius Elementary School.

Background: Exit 27 has been talked about for years.

In other action, the commissioners approved a low bid of $710,714 from Draw Enterprises of Charlotte for site work at a new Electricites substation. The project includes site clearing, erosion and sedimentation control measures, grading and landscaping. Work is expected to be complete in fall 2024.