Manager of North Carolina’s Highway System Set to Retire

Wed December 06, 2006 - Southeast Edition

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) Len Sanderson, the top manager overseeing North Carolina’s 78,500-mi. highway system, will retire Jan. 1, Transportation Secretary Lyndo Tippett announced Nov. 17.

Sanderson has worked at the department for 36 years and has served as state highway administrator since 1998. He directed highway planning, design, construction, maintenance and operations, according to the department Web site.

“We appreciate Len’s service over the years and wish him the best,” Tippett said in a written statement. “The search for a replacement has begun, and we plan to have this important position filled as soon as possible.”

The announcement comes a week after Tippett said he would discipline department workers responsible for paving problems on Interstate 40 that will cost $18.6 million to repair.

The retirement announcement didn’t refer to the I-40 widening project, which covers 10.6 mi. (17 km) between U.S. Highway 15-501 in Chapel Hill and state Highway 147 in Research Triangle Park. The concrete pavement is crumbling despite being paved just a few years ago.

The Transportation Department has reached an agreement with the federal government and the project’s contractor to share the repair bill.