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DelDOT highlights work to improve transportation in Wilmington

State and City of Wilmington officials are touting transportation infrastructure investments being made throughout the First State’s largest city.

Over $258 million is being spent on 20 projects planned or already underway in Wilmington.

“This will help us – as a city and a state – compete everyday," said Gov. John Carney (D)

The biggest ticket item is the $165 million rehabilitation of I-95 from I-495 into the city.  There’s also the $28 million Christina River Bridge project on the Riverfront that started in June.

But DelDOT Secretary Jennifer Cohan points to the upcoming public-private partnership on an $18 million Wilmington Transit Hub near the train station as equally significant.

“Rodney Square has become a kind of transit hub, a transfer station, which was never intended.  So there’s a ton of congestion on that side of the city," said Cohan. "Having a proper transit center, with a transfer hub allows the buses to move in an out much easier, much more efficiently and its actually safer for the citizens that ride the bus.”

Work on that transit center and the parking facility that goes with it is expected to begin early next year at Second and Walnut Streets on land that current is home to rental car facilities.

Another $12 million will also be spend on smaller projects that will focus on pedestrian, transit and streetscape  improvements on 4th Street, Walnut Street, Union Street and in Southbridge.

Most of the other projects on the board are slated to be finished in the next two years.

Wilmington Mayor Mike Purzycki says that builds needed momentum for the city.

“[It’s] the idea that were going to come in and do some of these big projects right away, start to transform the feel of the city, [and] give everybody the sense there is a change coming.”

A change that Gov. Carney hopes will spur economic development in Wilmington.

"Our city has to be successful," said Carney. "And all of these projects are going to make Wilmington a more attractive place to work, live and do business.  And that is one of our top priorities."

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.
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