Head Turnpike Executive Promotes Garden Parkway

Wed August 31, 2005 - Southeast Edition

GASTONIA, NC (AP) The new head of the North Carolina Turnpike Authority spoke in Gaston County about the proposed Garden Parkway, a 29-mile road that has the support of leaders in Mecklenburg and Gaston counties.

The Garden Parkway — so named because it likely would run near the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden in southeastern Gaston — would run from the Charlotte/Douglas International Airport through southern Gaston County and then swing northward toward Dallas.

David Joyner, the head of the turnpike authority, spoke to several dozen business and community leaders.

“Time is money and money is time — they’re pretty much the same thing,” Joyner said when asked about the two main issues the project is facing.

The parkway’s cost has been estimated at $420 million for construction. It would also cost between $50 million and $60 million for purchasing rights of way, state transportation officials said.

The authority has approved a $500,000 preliminary study on whether the public-private toll road would work financially, Joyner said. HTNB Corp. of Raleigh, an engineering firm, is in charge of the study.