WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) — The North Carolina Department of Transportation has stopped working on a bridge project that didn't score high enough on a state improvement plan to receive funding.

The StarNews reports the agency announced Tuesday that is now ending planning and design work on the Cape Fear Crossing, which would've added a fourth Wilmington-area crossing to the Cape Fear River. The estimated $1 billion bridge was first pitched over two decades ago and has been caught up in heated debate ever since.

The idea that the river needed another crossing was strongly supported by area residents, but the exact location of the bridge caused neighborhood-level backlash. Residents complained that a new bridge could ruin the quiet pace of their neighborhoods while officials argued that it would help the region better handle growth.

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Information from: The StarNews, http://starnewsonline.com

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