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Estes Drive Connectivity Project

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 News - October 2017

Right of Way (ROW) acquisition underway 


 Design (75% Complete) by Stewart Engineering 

Engineering Design - 75% Submittal

 (PDF, 19 MB)

Project Overview

The Estes Dr Connectivity Project is a multi-use path that originated in Central West Small Area Plan.  The Chapel Hill Bike Plan prioritized a bike lane in this important East West connector.  During 2015 and 2016, the community was presented three alternatives for the area (see all alternatives and history below). 

Alternative 2 was voted as the preferred alternative by the majority of the community;  this design was adopted by the Transportation and Connectivity Board and presented to Town Council in Spring, 2016. 

Currently the project is finishing the Design and Right of Way phases:

  • The design will be completed by January 2018.
  • Construction will begin by the end of Spring 2018, and take approximately 12 months.

  • Below, a map of the project area identifies the existing conditions.

    Estes Drive Meeting Map Zoom


    Preparation of Alternatives

    Stewart Engineering completed surveying on the site to identify the existing right of way, property lines, and utility infrastructure and easements. A detailed map of that surveying is available here.

    An alternatives analysis was performed by Stewart Engineering, resulting is 3 separate design concepts. The alternatives are available here:

    The Alternative 2 design is available for download here. (PDF, 19 MB)


    • First public outreach session held September 17th, 2015 to gather public input. Materials displayed at this meeting are available here.
    • Based on public input received in September, the consultant has performed an alternatives analysis.
    • A second public outreach was held on February 6th, 2016 that presented the project plan, and gathered final public comments.

    Additional Resources

    Chapel Hill Bike Plan

    Project Background


    The origins of the Estes Drive project reach back to 2009 when funding was provided through the Federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) program to provide bicycle improvements along Estes Dr. The Central West Small Area Plan, adopted in 2013, identified Estes Drive as a critical priority for bicycle and pedestrian improvements and recommended the implementation of protected bicycle facilities.  With the adoption of the Central West Small Area Plan additional CMAQ funds were allocated to Estes Drive project. 

    The project's CMAQ funding provides $2,338,000 for right-of-way acquisition and construction for the project in fiscal year 2016 and 2017. To fund the project design, an additional $247,000 has been allocated through the Federal Surface Transportation Program Direct Allocation (STP-DA) process by the Durham Chapel Hill Carrboro MPO, which will be split at 80% ($197,000) from the MPO and 20% ($49,400) from Town.

    The Central West Small Area Plan provides a vision for the Central West area, including for issues of transportation and connectivity. Below are two of the plan's illustrations of potential transportation improvements in the area.

     Central West Map



     Central West Cross-Section

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