A 22nd annual retreat like no other
- September 14, 2023
- Posted by: Joe Milazzo II
- Category: Blog
Thank you to the more than 50 business leaders and regional partners who joined us for our 22nd annual Regional Leadership Retreat last Thursday, September 7. Each retreat is different, because the mix of people and partners that attend are different.
For our 22nd annual retreat, RTA attendees heard updates on the successful, ongoing RDU letter writing campaign that is continuing this fall, enhanced NCDOT intercity Piedmont rail service, New Bern Avenue BRT corridor, the FAST 2.0 study, the complete 540 project, and multimodal freeway improvements.
As noted in last week’s briefing, RDU Airport CEO Michael Landguth noted that our support letters are working — and that we should continue to write more of them. While RDU has secured environmental approval, it has not yet maximized federal funding for a new, relocated primary runway.
Jason Orthner, NCDOT rail division director, noted that some intercity passenger trains are now below three hours to Charlotte — a service first discussed with RTA around 5 years ago — and highlighted the opportunity for a new Raleigh-Wake Forest-Richmond intercity passenger service that could shave more than an hour off of current travel times by train.
Michael Moore and Het Patel with the City of Raleigh provided a great update on the New Bern Avenue BRT corridor as they prepare to break ground this fall. Nick Morrison with NCDOT Integrated Mobility Division gave an overview of the upcoming FAST study, which will include linking the region’s BRT corridors with each other and with RDU Airport.
Brandon Jones and Dennis Jernigan with NCDOT and the NC Turnpike Authority, respectively, concluded the retreat by highlighting a series of critical ongoing and upcoming freeway projects including I-40, I-440, Complete 540, and the upgrade of US 1 north.
Our members provided great feedback during our roundtable discussion as well as during the Q&A for each presenter. They provided comments ranging from housing affordability to sustainability and regional growth, congestion relief, ongoing outreach and regional partnerships, and continued focus and prioritization.
The presentations and conversation were great, and the dialogue will inform the development of our 2024 action plan, which will occur later this fall.
Thank you for your membership and ongoing support of RTA.
Let’s get moving,
Joe Milazzo II, PE