ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Business and government leaders in Asheville hope a new administration in the governor's office can get a massive road project back on track.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reports ( ) that the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce has invited Transportation Secretary Tony Tata and state Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker to come to a May meeting about a $500 million project to improve Interstate 26 and other highways.

The project would build a new interchange between I-26 and Interstates 40 and 240, build new bridges over the French Broad River and improve the interchange between I-240 and I-26 on the north side of the city.

Business leaders plan to point out how I-26 is now the economic backbone of western North Carolina.

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