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Second phase of Triangle Expressway expected to ease traffic

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TWC News: Second phase of Triangle Expressway expected to ease traffic
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RALEIGH -- This week life on the road will get even smoother for drivers in the Triangle. The second phase of the Triangle Expressway will open to traffic Wednesday. It will connect 540 between NC 54 and US 64 in Apex.

Drivers will be able to use the second of three sections of the state's first toll road. Transportation leaders say this newest portion will save drivers about 20 minutes traveling from Apex to RTP.

The Triangle Expressway is expected to make life on the road more convenient, but it's going to cost drivers. On Thursday, drivers will have to start paying tolls on 540, which has been free. The tolls will be less expensive for drivers who use an NC Quick Pass transponder versus the bill by mail payment method.

Quick Pass tolls range from 30 cents to nearly $3.30. Bill by mail could cost you up to $5. Despite the costs, the Department of Transportation hopes drivers will see the convenience of the road.

"We're hoping we're delivering a product that the traveling public will see the benefit, and ride the toll road in order to receive that benefit," said Barry Mickle with the NC Turnpike Authority. "If they don't see that benefit then they can take the free alternative."

In January, the Turnpike Authority plans to open the third and final phase of the Triangle Expressway, connecting US 64 in Apex to NC 55 in Holly Springs.

Wednesday morning, there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open the second portion of the Triangle Expressway.

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