RALEIGH – America’s Transportation Awards presented Monroe Expressway with the regional award for “Best Use of Technology and Innovation”. The award was presented to the North Carolina Turnpike Authority at the 80th annual conference of the Southeastern Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (SASHTO).

James “JJ” Eden, executive director of the North Carolina Turnpike Authority, said in a statement, “We are delighted to see the Monroe Expressway receive regional recognition for its innovative approach to transportation. In particular, we are grateful to the residents, businesses and educational institutions of Union County for their strong support of this project.

The Monroe Freeway is an 18 mile toll bypass of US 74 in Union County that opened to traffic in November 2019. Drivers choosing to use this route pay tolls with a NC Quick Pass prepaid account or receive an invoice in the mail depending on vehicle registration.

In its nomination request, the North Carolina Turnpike Authority (NCTA) cited the innovative use of the toll to finance the construction of the Monroe Freeway faster than the project could be accomplished by traditional means, relieving congestion in a busy area of ​​the state. Additionally, the use of fully electronic toll technology makes the Monroe Expressway more convenient to use than traditional toll facilities with cabs, meaning there is no stopping or slowing down.

The Union County Chamber of Commerce and Wingate University provided testimony to SASHTO in support of the Monroe Expressway. Winning regionally, the Monroe Freeway will advance to compete for a national award from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.

The America’s Transportation Awards program, sponsored by the AASHTO, AAA, and the United States Chamber of Commerce, recognizes DOTs for their projects that make their communities a better place to live, work and play.

For more information on the Monroe Freeway and other NCTA projects, visit ncquickpass.com.