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The Mallory Creek Connector will provide easier and safer transportation through town.

It seems odd that homeowners would be excited to see construction outside their homes. But at Mallory Creek Plantation, a relatively quiet hamlet off N.C. 133, they are ready for activity. After years of waiting, Mallory Creek Road will be extended to Rice Gate Way in Brunswick Forest.

The Mallory Creek Connector in Leland, NCThe Mallory Creek Connector, as it is called, has been on the Town of Leland’s master plan for some time. The developer of Mallory Creek was originally obligated by town ordinances to continue the road as the subdivision around it was built, but when the recession hit most of the home building stopped, as did the construction of the road. Today Mallory Creek Road comes to a screeching dead end.

Until recently, the developer of Mallory Creek remained obligated to complete the road and landscape the area surrounding it as future phases of the subdivision got approved and built, but the Town of Leland decided it was time to move things along. The town agreed to contribute funding for construction, and the project started in October 2016. The Connector is scheduled to be completed in the spring of 2017.

“The town is sharing the costs with the developer of Mallory Creek to accelerate the completion of this road because it is so important to the town,” says Town of Leland Economic and Community Development Director Gary Vidmar. “We put money in the pot to get it all done now.”

The Connector is integral to Leland’s development and safety. Most importantly, it will create easier access for medical and emergency response teams. Without the need to drive down N.C. 133 to U.S. 17, response times could be sliced by minutes, possibly a difference between life and death. A bonus is that it has the potential to keep insurance costs lower for residents in affected areas.

In addition, retailers in Brunswick Forest will benefit from easier access to their storefronts.

“We’re excited to be able to ride our bikes to restaurants at Brunswick Forest,” says Lindsay Griffith, a Mallory Creek resident and mom to two. “We’re also thrilled we will not have to go down 133 to get to the grocery stores on that side of town.”

Residents like the Griffiths will able to bike and walk safely as the developer is installing a paved, 8-foot-wide multi-use asphalt path along the entire length of the Connector. The developer also will install street lights along the way.

On the other side of the Connector, Brunswick Forest residents will have easier access to N.C. 133 and Southport. Unfortunately, residents on Rice Gate Way will see a significant change to their road. They will no longer live on a dead-end street, which is stubbed out for a future connection.

Many have concerns about speed control on the new longer road. The Town of Leland is not installing speed bumps or stop signs, but there will be a roundabout. This traffic pattern was selected in an effort to future-proof the road. Eventually, roads will be placed perpendicular to Mallory Creek Road and will connect at the roundabout. In the meantime, the speed limit will not be increased and a patrolled zone is to be expected.

Jerry Helms, director of sales at Brunswick Forest, says that the Brunswick Forest community fully supports anything that makes connection with the Town of Leland easier. “We know this will be good for businesses in Brunswick Forest, plus anything that helps the town progress and grow is good for everyone,” he says.

The Mallory Creek Connector is just another step to a more connected Leland.

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About The Author

Allison Barrett Carter

Allison is a freelance writer who relocated to Leland from Chapel Hill with her husband and two sons.

1 Comment

  1. Glen Thearling

    Key to the connectors usefulness and impact is finally manning the Fire /EMS station on Hwy 133. It will now have 3 personnel during the day and 2 at night. This will allow a first vehicle response to start from the station while volunteers are responding to the station for gear and can then that a second emergency vehicle to the emergency. It should be noted that 40 of the 60 volunteers live in New Hanover County and would still be traveling Hwy 133 to get to the station. The improved initial response from the station will allow limited access inside a fire scene until required additional personnel arrive, if it can not be reasonably determined that no one is still the building.

    Cost wise the Town will pay an additional ~$400,000 a year for this Fire / EMS improvement. This added cost does not address pension and personnel benefits for Firefighters and EMS personnel as they will now be town employees. Leland is rapidly expanding and added Fire / EMS is needed.

    Coming in the next few years is a needed new manned Fire EMS Station along Hwy 17 near the front of Brunswick Forest. There is currently an unmanned station on Old Lanvale Road near Hwy 17 but there is no infrastructure to allow staffing. A new Station can be expected to cost taxpayers greater than $2 million for just a building. This will help response times to Leland’s Grayson Park, and Sneed Farm communities.

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