New Hanover County does not build or maintain roads. The Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (WMPO) and NC Department of Transportation (DOT) are responsible for transportation projects, however New Hanover County partners with these organizations on transportation plans for the county.
The Wilmington Urban Area MPO prepares transportation plans for the lower Cape Fear region. These plans are used to guide federal and state transportation funding decisions. New Hanover County partners with WMPO on special plans and staff serve on various advisory committees.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) builds and maintains roads in New Hanover County. New transportation projects go through a state-wide ranking process for funding, so most new NCDOT roads are major projects. NCDOT also develops standards that developers use when building public roads. NCDOT follows policies and procedures for when and how these roads can become part of the state system.
New Hanover County adopted its first greenway plan in 2013 in partnership with Wilmington Urban Area MPO and the City of Wilmington. The Wilmington-New Hanover County Comprehensive Greenway Plan includes prioritized bicycle and pedestrian routes.
The City of Wilmington, Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (WMPO), and the NC Department of Transportation (NCDOT) have conducted a study to investigate the feasibility of realigning the existing CSXT railroad line that traverses in a “V” shape through the city. Moving this line across the Cape Fear River would provide a new location for rail access to the Port of Wilmington, and offer the potential of repurposing the existing CSXT railroad corridor for transit use.