Project Overview Video


Project Overview

B-6051 - The N.C. Department of Transportation proposes to replace the bridge on Wilkinson Boulevard (U.S. 74/ U.S. 29) over the Catawba River (Lake Wylie) on the Gaston/Mecklenburg County Line.  Wilkinson Boulevard is 6 lanes wide west of the bridge (Gaston County) and 5 lanes wide east (Mecklenburg County) which periodically causes a bottleneck, especially when I-85 traffic is detoured to U.S. 74 during emergencies.  The new bridge will be 6 lanes wide to eliminate the bottleneck.  The bridge will also be raised at the mid-point to allow for better navigational clearance for boating traffic. 

U-6143 - Includes improvements to the intersection of Catawba Street (N.C. 7) with Wilkinson Boulevard (U.S. 74/ U.S. 29).  In the mornings there are backups from northbound Catawba Street onto eastbound Wilkinson Boulevard.  In the afternoons, the opposite occurs:  there are backups from westbound Wilkinson Boulevard for traffic turning onto southbound Catawba Street.  The project will modify the intersection from a traditional intersection to a reduced conflict intersection, which is a design better suited to handle the volume of traffic moving through the intersection.

Project Highlights

The project will include multiuse paths on both sides of Wilkinson Boulevard, connecting Gaston College with Kevin Loftin Riverfront Park and the  ISWA Nature Preserve.   Multi-use paths will also be included on both sides of Catawba Street, connecting Wilkinson Boulevard with the Kevin Loftin Park entrance on the east side of Catawba Street and to a greenway proposed by the City of Belmont on the west side.

Proposed aesthetic treatments to the bridge include a decorative rail and substructure. The substructure will be stained beige and trimmed in a stamped brick pattern stained three colors.  A pair of overlooks, accessible from the multi-use paths on either side, will be at the apex of the bridge.   Light posts will also be included. 

On the Belmont (Gaston County) side of the project, where there is sufficient space, the medians will be left open for the City to design and add landscaping after completion of the roadwork. 

Project History

B-6051 was programmed in 2017 and planning began in 2018.  In 2019, when it was realized that the footprint of B-6051 would be long enough to overlap with project U-6143,the projects were combined for planning, design and construction.

Public Involvement

Comments for this project were submitted by August 27, 2022. 

Project Map

View or download project map click here or on the map below


For additional information on how to read a public meeting map, click here.

Typical Sections


B-6051 Project Questions

Question title

1. Do you have questions or comments on the proposal to replace the existing 5-lane bridge with a 6-lane bridge?

Closed for Comments

Question title

2. Do you have any comments or questions on the proposed bridge color or aesthetic pattern?

Closed for Comments

Question title

3. Do you have questions or comments on the proposed connection to the Park and Nature Preserve?

Closed for Comments

What is a Reduced Conflict Intersection?

The most common type of reduced-conflict intersection design eliminates left turns from side roads onto busy main roads.

Raised medians direct traffic from the side road into turning right. When there is a safe opening in traffic, drivers enter the flow of traffic on the main route. To go the other direction (ltraditionally a eft turn), or cross the highway, they pull into a dedicated lane – typically les​s than 1,000 feet away – ​and make a U-turn. There may be a traffic signal at this location.


Watch this short video to get more information on Reduced Conflict Intersections: 

U- 6143 project question 

Question title

1. Do you have questions regarding eh reduced conflict intersection proposed at Catawba Street and Wilkinson Boulevard?

Closed for Comments


Bridge Visualizations






Project Funding:



 Funded costs Costs*

 Utility Relocation$    6,000,000
 Right-of-Way Acquisition$  4,000,000

 Construction Cost

$ 52,000,000

  Total Cost


        *Estimated costs are subject to change. 

Project Timeline:




Public Involvement

August 2022

Environmental DocumentNovember 2022

Right-of-Way Acquisition Begins

November 2022

Construction Begins

June 2024

* Future dates subject to change. 

Project Comments

 Comments for this project were submitted by August 27, 2022.

Question title

Would you like to be added to the project mailing list?

Question title

Do you have any comments or questions regarding the proposed project?

Closed for Comments


Project Contact

David Stutts

Project Manager 

NCDOT Structures Management Unit

1581 Mail Service Center

Raleigh, NC 27699-1581

984-205-6615 code 5269


Project Contact

John Williams

Consultant Project Manager


8601 Six Forks Road Forum Suite 700

Raleigh, NC 27615

984-205-6615 code 5269

Resources for Property Owners

Although the N.C. Department of Transportation works to minimize the number of homes and businesses displaced by a road project, it is inevitable, in many cases, that a certain amount of private property is needed. The following information explains right of way acquisition and answers questions about the process.  

Right-of-Way Brochure Single Page Layout                   Folleto del Proceso de Adquisición de Bienes Raíces
Right-of-Way Frequently Asked Questions

Title VI Feedback

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